See Updates below.
To make a great Margarita you need great tequila, and most of the widely-available affordable tequilas (including name brands) are dreadful mixtos. (See Types of Tequila) Fortunately there is a very good tequila that won't bust your budget: Zapopan,
- 3 oz tequila 100% agave, reposado preferred
oz triple sec*
good quality, orange curaçao also works well
oz lime juice**
unsweetened, preferably fresh, Mexican/Key lime for extra flavor
For more sweetness, add more triple sec.
Great accompaniment for guacamole!
Update (8/2017): Alas, Trader Joe's no longer carries Zapopan, and the replacement tequila doesn't measure up, but Zapopan can still be found at Bitters+Bottles. The price is higher, but it's still a great bargain. Only Blanco is stocked, but Reposado can be ordered.
Update (5/2020): In California, try Mission Wine & Spirits (in Pasadena), which ships to California addresses: 1L for $19.95 (still a bargain).
Tequila alternatives (easy to find):
- Olmeca Altos Reposado
- Lunazul Reposado
- El Jimador Reposado
- Drillaud (excellent)
- Mr Stacks 60 Proof (bargain)
- Hiram Walker 60 (1.75L size only)
- Nellie and Joe's 100% Key Lime Juice (not the similar Key West Lime Juice)
- Florida Key West 100% Authentic Key Lime Juice