The origin of the margarita is a matter of dispute among cocktail nerds. Was it created in Mexico, or just popularized there? Who really knows? Either way, it’s safe to say that drinking one on Cinco de Mayo has become an entirely American obsession. This year, we suggest hitting one of these three authentic Mexican eateries for a marg shaken up just right.
The Hugo Rita | Xochi
A dinner at James Beard Award–winning chef Hugo Ortega’s buzzy downtown eatery is so much better when it starts off with the signature Hugo Rita, a perfect mix of Sauza silver tequila, triple sec, simple syrup, and lime, shaken before your very eyes. Or nab one for $6 during happy hour, when the perfect accompaniment, the best wood-roasted oysters in town, are half off.
The Noble Rita | Arnaldo Richards' Picos
If you’re in the mood for the ultimate luxury, head to this Upper Kirby favorite, where chef Arnaldo’s daughter and beverage director, Monica, offers 18 different margaritas, including three from her collection of barrel-aged tequilas. Try the Noble Rita, made with single-barrel Casa Noble—a coveted añejo (aged) tequila that goes down smooth enough to shoot, but is just as tasty served up with a splash of Cointreau and fresh lime.
Margarita del Día | Cuchara
Large barrels of colorful Espolón Blanco–fueled margs abound during brunch and dinner at the best Mexico City–style bistro in town. The rotating varieties include ingredients such as cantaloupe, the eccentric guanábana fruit (known in English as soursop), cactus, serrano chiles, hibiscus, and jicama. No wonder the restaurant encourages guests to #BlameAmado, the bartender behind these irresistibly deadly drinks.