In honor of Cinco de Mayo, I thought I'd dedicate today's post to one of the most amazing adult beverages of all time -- the margarita. Whether you prefer your margarita frozen, on the rocks, with salt or without, this versatile refreshment is one of my all-time favorites. In fact, if we're going to be really specific, my favorite margarita, the Famous Swirlie, is a concoction served by local restaurant Austin Grill, and features a sweet mix of 1/2 frozen strawberry margarita and 1/2 frozen lime margarita. Isn't she beautiful?

Here are a few fun facts about the margarita:

  • There's debate over who invented the margarita, but a popular story has it invented in 1948 by socialite Margarita Sames. According to the legend it was during a party at her cliff side hacienda in Acapulco, that Margarita began looking for something cool to cut the dust of a hot afternoon. So she experimented by mixing Tequila Herradura, Cointreau and fresh lime juice.
  • The only "officially recognized" margarita by the International Bartender's Association is the version served on the rocks with a salt rim.
  • The margarita was the most popularly ordered drink in 2008, representing 18 percent of all mixed drink sales in the US, followed by the martini, rum and coke, vodka and tonic, and the Cosmopolitan. (Cheers On-Premise Handbook 2008)
  • According to a 2008 Brown-Forman survey, on average, Americans consume 185,000 margaritas per hour.
  • The South (Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, Texas, etc.) accounts for 34.9 percent of margarita sales. (Cheers On-Premise Handbook 2008)
  • Atlanta, Miami, St. Louis and Nashville are among the best major metro cities for the margarita (Cheers On-Premise Handbook 2008)
  • The U.S. is the number one tequila market – much larger than Mexico (Cheers On-Premise Handbook 2008)

Unfortunately this sweet nectar of the gods packs a whopping average of 250 - 500 calories each, but that's no reason to pass on this delightful beverage. I'm happy to share with you a low-cal version, courtesy of, weighing in at only 115 calories per serving:

Low Cal Margarita On the Rocks


  • 3/4 cup Sierra Mist Free (or Diet Sprite Zero, or your other fave no-cal lemon-lime soda)
  • 1.5 oz. tequila*
  • 1 packet (two 5-calorie servings) sugar-free powdered drink mix, lemonade (like the one by Crystal Light) 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • Optional: lime slice for garnish and salt or no-calorie sweetener for rim of glass


If desired, run some lime juice along the rim of the glass and dip into a dish of salt or sweetener. Mix all ingredients together. Pour over 1 cup of crushed ice. Optional: Garnish with lime slice. Enjoy. Serves 1.

*You can also make your margaritas alcohol-free. Each recipe, without tequila, contains around 20 calories!

Not worried about calories? Try out this tried and true recipe:

Traditional Frozen Margarita


  • 1 ounce Tequila
  • 1 ounce Cointreau
  • Fresh lime juice to taste
  • 1/4 ounce crushed ice


Frost the rim of a glass with sugar. Mix all ingredients in a blender for a few minutes. Garnish with a lime slice.

I know, I know, today's post had little to do with home renovation, unless you think of it as a sweet release from the stresses of ongoing projects. We all need to take a break every now and then, right? Most importantly, I'd like to remind everyone to please drink responsibly (this includes refraining from the use of power tools post-indulgence) and have a happy Cinco de Mayo!

What's your favorite kind of margarita to indulge in? Any great restaurants that we need to visit for a can't miss margarita? Any good tales after having a few too many? Please share your story.

Comments 2


5/5/2011 at 10:44 AM
I love the Lauriol Plaza margaritas. I'm also a fan of the swirlie.
I've heard great things about the Lauriol Plaza margaritas, but sadly have never tried one. I'll have to make that a priority!
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