A (lemon) twist on margaritas

Margaritas are in the background of every family get-together, and no girls' night out, Cinco de Mayo,…
A (lemon) twist on margaritas
Foto: SXC

Margaritas are in the background of every family get-together, and no girls’ night out, Cinco de Mayo, or TGIF celebration that would be complete without this beloved drink. Take the typical ingredients of tequila, lime juice, and Triple Sec (or Cointreau), pour it into a glass with a salted rim, and it’s instantly recognizable. Since its invention in the late 1930s (or 1940s, depending on which origin story you believe), there have been endless twists on this classic drink. And despite all the variations already out there, we believe there’s always room for a new kind of margarita. Below is our contribution to the timeless cocktail, so when it’s your turn to throw the next party, you can offer the tastiest variation yet!

2 cups ice cubes

8 Meyer lemons (you can use regular lemons, but Meyer ones will be sweeter and less acidic)

Dash of sugar cane syrup or simple syrup*

4 sprigs fresh peppermint

2 vanilla beans

4 ounces tequila (the better the brand, the better the taste!)

Dash of soda water or seltzer (substitute Sprite or 7UP for extra sweetness)

1 lemon, sliced into wheels, for garnish

*Simple syrup instructions: Take one part water and one part sugar, and combine in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until boiling, continuing to stir until sugar has dissolved. Let cool before using.

In a pitcher, combine ice cubes, juice from the lemons, and several dashes of sugar cane syrup or simple syrup. Remove the leaves from the peppermint sprigs and add them to pitcher. Split the vanilla beans, scrape the insides, and add to the pitcher, saving the empty pods for a garnish. Add tequila and stir. Before putting the pitcher in the refrigerator to chill, add some lemon wheels for garnish.

Serve margaritas in tall glasses with ice, and finish with a splash of soda water. Garnish with another lemon wheel, a vanilla bean pod, or sprig of mint.

This margarita recipe is just a stepping stone on your way to having a memorable celebration; the beauty of mixed drinks is that you can vary the ingredients with what you have handy and still come up with something great. Mix and match juices, substitute different fruits, or try to blend your own margarita for a fun and refreshing texture. You can even mix and match ingredients from different recipes and create your own margarita. Even if you don’t like the results after the first try, it’ll sure be fun testing until you do!