How to Make the Perfect Margarita

A common question we see from tequila and mixed drink fanatics: “Is there an ultimate guide in regards on how to make the perfect margarita?”

Our answer to that is yes friends, there is. And fortunately for you, you’re already already here at that ultimate guide 😉

The perfect margarita is an art form that takes practice, patience, and experimentation. We recently saw the movie Burnt, featuring Bradley Cooper. The movie depicts the downfall of a 2-star Michelin chef due to drug and alcohol addiction, with the plot of the movie being his climb back to the top of the food chain (no pun intended).

There is one quote in particular that we love.

“People eat because they are hungry; I want to make food that makes people stop eating.”

We can apply this beautifully in regards to how to make the perfect margarita. People drink because they are thirsty. We want to make the perfect margarita that makes people stop dead in their tracks.

That’s perfection.

But there is beauty in imperfections, too. To steal another Burnt quote.

“No, a chef should strive to be consistent, at experience, but not consistent in taste.”

From a how to make the perfect margarita perspective, we take this as a “It doesn’t have to be perfect every time; you can even have different variations of your perfect margarita. But…let’s wow people, each and every time.”

So, are you ready to craft your perfect margarita?

How to Make the Perfect Margarita

We’ve broken the steps on how to make a perfect margarita down into very actionable advice. Let’s have some fun!

How to Make the Perfect Margarita: Rocks vs Blended

The first real question to decide is whether your perfect margarita is on the rocks or blended. Generally speaking, in the tequila world – blended is the way to go. But we’re taking this from a stance that sometimes you might be hosting a party with people who aren’t as big of tequila fanatics as we are; so perhaps you need to tone down the taste a bit.

In general, margaritas on the rocks are going to have a stronger tequila taste – for better or worse. Margaritas that are blended via a blender or a margarita machine are going to be a bit more slushy/ICEE like, and will probably be more agreeable to those who aren’t as experienced with tequila in general.

Of course, since this is the perfect margarita, we suspect they’ll like it on the rocks, regardless. But we are slightly biased 😉

How to Make the Perfect Margarita: Types of Tequila

What this site is all about, after all…

You’ll need to pick out your favorite tequila in order to craft your perfect margarita. We’re not saying you can’t make a good margarita if all you have is Jose Cuervo around…but your chances are better if you have a higher quality tequila, like a Don Julio or a Patron.

Let’s go back to the first point we made: rocks vs blended.

Obviously, if you’re making the perfect margarita on the rocks, the quality of tequila is going to be more important because you’re basically sipping the tequila itself, albeit with some added ingredients.

On the contrary, if you’re making the perfect margarita in a blended style, you won’t be getting such a strong tequila taste. In these cases, we think it’s okay to skimp a bit on the tequila quality, simply because there’s no sense in using the good stuff in a way that actually masks the natural flavors and aromas of the tequila.

How to Make the Perfect Margarita: Flavor

Lime flavoring is the ultimate margarita classic. While there are many factors that go into making a great lime margarita…”consistency is death.” That is another quote from Burnt!

Just because something is a classic doesn’t mean you can’t branch out from it! The only way to have great experiences is to try new things. So while you can absolutely use a lime flavor to make the perfect margarita, don’t be afraid to try something a little bit outside of the box; perhaps mango, or kiwi?

The flavor you choose for your perfect margarita will obviously vary by your audience, too. If it’s a girls night out (or in), perhaps something really fruity is in order. If it’s a guy’s night, perhaps something stronger, classic, and on the rocks is the best way to go.

The real point we are trying to drive home with this is that you shouldn’t feel locked into one specific flavor. Experiment!

How to Make the Perfect Margarita: Explaining Presentation

We’re going to go back to our Burnt movie again – think about gourmet, Michelin starred dining. It certainly isn’t about getting full – look at how tiny the portions are! Instead, it’s all about the experience. And a huge part of the experience is how the dish is presented itself. The craft of decorating the dish in a beautiful way is almost as important as the dish itself. You should always put your best foot forward.

For example, you wouldn’t show up to an interview at your dream job wearing a t-shirt and jeans, would you?

So to make the perfect margarita – presentation is key!

The way the drink is presented is going to be the first thing that someone notices about your drink.

What Goes Into Presentation?

If it’s in a red solo cup, no one can even see your perfect margarita. While there’s a time and a place for solo cups (college parties come to mind!); compare that to presenting your perfect margarita in an actual decorative margarita glass, perfectly rimmed with salt, and perhaps even with a lime garnish…

We’re getting thirsty just picturing that in our heads right now.

So, how do you present your perfect margarita?

For starters, pick the correct glass. We have an entire article dedicated to helping you with that conundrum.

Secondly, pick a garnish. While most of our recipes list these as “optional”, you can see the importance of them in regards to presentation for how to make the perfect margarita.

The garnish you select is obviously going to depend on the flavor that you decide for your perfect margarita. As you can see, all of our points are tying together quite well here…

So if you have a lime margarita, slice a little piece of lime and hang it on the side.

If you have a strawberry flavor, perhaps a red straw going through a strawberry is in order.

Here is an example to get the creative juices flowing:

How to Make the Perfect Margarita

How to Make the Perfect Margarita Bottom Line

To recap:

  • Watch Burnt, it’s well worth adding to your Netflix queue
  • To make the perfect margarita, remember your audience
  • Rocks vs blended – margarita on the rocks will enhance the tequila experience; can be a good or bad thing
  • Try new flavors
  • Presentation matters, a lot
  • Have FUN with it

How do you make your perfect margarita? Let us know below!

READ MORE: How to Make a Tequila Mojito

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