Sometimes, ordering a margarita is easy, because you know what you want (or are too many in to care). Other times, it can feel like the bartender is interviewing you. Frozen? On the rocks? Salt or sugar rim? Traditional or mango-pineapple-guava? That’s when we’re grateful for the talented bartenders around the city that offer some knock-out versions of the classics, as well as delicious twists on the basic.
Barrio Chino - It may be impossible to get a table since they don’t take reservations, but worth the wait. Their margaritas are a mixologist’s dream, with combinations like elderflower/tamarind and habanero/grapefruit. They change up the menu frequently so you’ll always be pleasantly surprised.
Empellón Cocina - Chef Alex Stupak is a master of mezcal and does the spirit right throughout his Empellón mini empire. While the food may feature unusual combinations (speaking of, make sure to try the pistachio guacamole), go for the classic marg here and experience why this drink is a classic.
Ofrenda - The cocktails at this intimate and cool Mexican restaurant in the West Village tend towards a tequila/mezcal base and the margaritas are just $5 during their daily (as in 7. days. a. week.) happy hour from 4-7pm. Best on the list is the Smoky Jalapeño Margarita, which turns up the heat just enough with pepper-infused tequila.
Super Linda - TriBeCa’s Latin hot spot has some stellar cocktails but the margaritas are the stars. The celery-ginger margarita is practically a health elixir with all those vitamins, so no need to hold back on seconds.
Photo Credit: Gotham Magazine