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How to Make a Margarita

Learn how to make a margarita in this Howcast video about how to make cocktails.


We all know and love a margarita. If you're anything like me, you've probably had your fair share. If you have, you're probably noticed that margaritas can vary from incredible to 'ugh'. I'm going to show you how to make one of those incredibly fresh and delicious margaritas. There are 3 key steps you need to follow. First, your tequila; it has to be 100% blue agave. That means there's been no other grain alcohol or anything else to dilute the quality of the agave. By law, it only has to 51%, and that's the really cheap bottom shelf stuff. You don't want that, you want really good quality tequila. 2 ounces 100% agave tequila. When you think about it, the tequila is almost half of the drink, so you want it to be a good half.

After that, we're going to go for our Cointreau, or orange liqueur. It doesn't have to be Cointreau. I tend to swear by it, but any high-quality orange liqueur will do; just nothing cheap, syrupy. All that triple sec stuff, I wouldn't go there. Do not go for the mix. Don't do it, you'll be sorry. Or maybe you won't, in which case, you should probably stop watching this video. 3/4 ounce of Cointreau.

The third key is fresh-squeezed lime juice; the fresher the better. 3/4 ounce of fresh-squeezed lime juice, because I know you're making fresh juice. I like to add a little bit of agave nectar; you could also use simple syrup. I think that it just rounds out the sharpness of the Cointreau a little bit. Cointreau's a beast. If you want your margarita a little bit sweeter, they tend to make them sweeter here, there's nothing wrong with that; just add a little more agave, a little more Cointreau. Make it to taste.

We're going to; of course, shake this cocktail because it has lime juice in it. Margaritas are definitely one of those cocktails you can do up or on the rocks. There's really no best way to do it. I like to do it on the rocks, and definitely with a salt rim. I'm going to show you a really neat trick to get that salt on there. I have this chilling in the freezer. Now that it's frozen, when you take it out, as it warms, up you'll notice that condensation will start to form on the edge of the glass. Once that happens, we'll just be able dip it right in the salt and it'll stick to the glass, so no lime around the edge. Easy, clean, and it's going to look better, too. Time to shake.

Let's see if this is ready for its salt rim. Look at that. I only like to do half of the rim, just to give people an option. Maybe they don't want a mouthful of salt for one sip. I'm going to get some ice from the freezer. I have that really nice cube ice which is going to make the drink the drink look really pretty. You can see this is a really big piece of ice, so it's not going to melt too fast but it will keep the drink cold. Let's just finish this off with a nice slice of lime. I feel like a lime wheel just looks prettier than a lime wedge for some reason. That's just me.

There you have it. Does not have to be a mystery any longer; that's how you make a classic margarita.

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