She loves me, she loves me not…
Don’t let your guests down, make the most of your house Margarita. This easy shrub Margarita is a crowd pleaser that goes down easy, but not too easy.
The Margarita is all about the Tequila
There are few drinks as ubiquitous as the Margarita. Celebrated on menus across the nation, this drink is consumed in copious quantities, ordered in pitchers, served as a slushy at festivals, and garnished with a thousand strange things (I’m looking at you Miami Beach with your Coronitas).
And it’s no wonder. The Margarita is a classic because it is approachable and just a little exotic. That’s exactly the balance most of us in the cocktail world look for when we create new drinks. How can we combine something that is familiar with something that’s just a little outside the box to create a drink that you WANT to drink not just the first time, but again and again?
At its core it’s a simple drink, a basic Becky mixture of Tequila, lime, and sugar. The most typical variance in this drink comes in the form of the sweetener. The rail happy hour version gets a dose of neon sour mix. The “Cadillac” version of national chain restaurants reaches for Grand Marnier for a rich brandy undertone and hint of orange. “Skinny” versions will substitute agave nectar or stevia so you can enjoy your alcohol “guilt free.”
However you take your Marg, or ‘Rita, it’s a feel good drink that benefits from mass appeal. As a result, we have a love/hate relationship with the drink—there are a LOT of bad Margaritas out there! The best way to respect this classic is to realize it’s all about the Tequila. A good Margarita should taste like the tequila you’re using, not mask it. This is more true now that ever before with the explosion of amazing Tequila and Mezcal brands on the market.
Anatomy of a Daisy
The Margarita is in a class of drinks known as Daisies. A Daisy is a beautiful thing, in nature and at the bar. It’s the base formulation for many classic sour cocktails such as the Daiquiri, the Sidecar, the Jack Rose, and, of course, the Margarita (which literally means “daisy” in Spanish).
To make a daisy, you want 3 parts spirit, 2 parts sour, and 1 part sweet.
Depending on the strength of each of these ingredients, you may have to adjust those proportions. And there’s nothing wrong with going dryer or sweeter depending on your palate and your guests. I find a little extra sugar works wonders if serving on the rocks or as a frozen drink. Conversely, if I’m serving up, I’ll dial the sweet back a bit.
At Shrub District, we love sour and we love spirits. Our shrub Margarita recipe is designed for simplicity that will highlight that $50 bottle of Tequila but work as well with Cuervo.
- 1 oz Shrub District Lime
- 2 oz Tequila
- 0.5 oz Shrub District Lime
- 1.5 oz Tequila
- 0.5 oz lime juice
- 0.5 oz orange liqueur or oleo saccharum
We recommend shaking even if you’re going to serve on the rocks because shaking works better with juices. You can either strain over fresh ice or leave the broken shards in there if you’re not worried about being fancy.