It's that time of the year when sitting your ass on various local patios and drinking before noon is totally acceptable, folks. We're pretty excited about patio season, and it's indisputable that the best drink to enjoy on a patio on a spring day is a margarita. When it's hot out, they're impossibly refreshing. When it's still a little chilly because Texas weather is weird, the tequila will warm you right on up.
Some (many) margaritas in this city are terrible, even though it is practically the official drink of Dallas. When made with bottled sweet-n-sour and bad tequila, margaritas aren't even worth drinking. These 10 margaritas, though, meet a much higher set of standards. Made with the best ingredients and mixed by talented barmen, you might as well just tell your job to shove it and plop your ass on one of the fine patios attached to these 10 establishments. Get thee to drinking, Dallas.
Meso Maya Chef Nico Sanchez's Mexican food is reason enough to go to Meso Maya, but the margaritas are worth a stop in even if you're not hungry. There are about six margaritas on the menu, including avocado and serrano-berry infused versions, and you can't go wrong with any of them. Each is made with a different tequila, so you might as well just go ahead and give them all a try so you can really decide which is your favorite.
Gemma There isn't much Mexican influence on the Napa-inspired menu at Gemma, but you basically have to have at least one margarita on your menu in this town. It's Dallas law. If you've been to this Henderson Avenue hotspot, you know that the food is prepared to exacting standards, and the blood orange margarita is equally refined. It's a simple mix, with blanco tequila, blood orange juice and lime, which is all you need to make a great margarita.
Mariano's Tex-Mex food may not be haute cuisine, but we all love it in spite of its radioactive-orange cheese. When you're satiating your queso fix at Mariano's at Skillman Street and Northwest Highway, wash down all those chips with margaritas invented by a guy who gave us the world's most exciting invention since the steam engine: the frozen margarita machine. If frozen 'ritas give you brain freeze, stick with The Mariano, a classic top-shelf drink made with Don Julio Reposado.
Mi Cocina Yeah, we know Mi Cocina is a chain restaurant, but they still make some of the best damn margaritas in town. The Mambo Taxi is every lush in town's favorite, if only because it packs serious get-you-drunk power. If you're too classy for a taxi, upgrade yours to a Mambo Limousine, which replaces the plain-ass brandy with Chambord. It's still the sangria-rita you love from Chili's or whatever, just classed up with better ingredients. That's something we can all get behind.
El Tizoncito This casual taco and torta joint is well-known for its awesome charro bean soup, but the margaritas are also worth paying attention to. El Tizoncito offers three varieties -- tamarind, guava and the usual lime -- and they're only $6 each. You can be well on your way to hammered for less than $20, assuming you don't get the drunken munchies and order a few dozen tacos.
Komali The margaritas at Komali are some of the best in the state, at least according to Texas Monthly. If you don't trust their rankings, go try the Caliente Clementine yourself. The exclusive-to-Komali Herradura Double Barrel Reposado is mixed with fresh tangerine purée, habanero and fresh lime juice, to make an incredibly spicy and addictive drink. If spicy isn't your thing, order the Black Passion margarita, made with blackberry purée and passion fruit.
Mexican Sugar At Mexican Sugar, the cocktails are described as "beautifiers," and we all need to be a little prettier. Get classy with the hibiscus margarita, made with hibiscus water and Espolon reposado, or show off your adventurous side with the La Sancha, mixed with "hellfire shrub," Dulce Vida reposado and cilantro. There are twelve margaritas on this list, so you'll definitely find something you love. If you're not a fan of lime juice, try the Paloma, which is basically just a margarita made with grapefruit juice.
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San Salvaje The cocktail menu here is constantly changing, but you can always find an excellent margarita at a Stephan Pyles joint, and San Salvaje is no exception. On National Margarita Day earlier this year, San Salvaje's Ring In The Spring featured flower-infused tequila, orange blossom water and agave. Even if they don't still have the infused tequila, ask for this margarita and they'll surely have most of the ingredients on hand. If they don't, just tell them to make you damn near any margarita. It's practically guaranteed to be good.
Mesero Mico Rodriguez has a reputation in this city for great Mexican food, and his eponymous "Micorita" is equally solid. You can order this margarita, made with El Jimador reposado, frozen or on the rocks, add a swirl of sangria, or lighten it up with Splenda instead of sugar. At $10, they're not the cheapest margaritas on this list, but they're reliably good.
Gloria's You can't have a margaritas list without including any Gloria's location in town. The happy hour at this Salvadoran-Mexican restaurant is legendary, and the perfect time to drink way too many margaritas. Order a massive plate of fresh ceviche, and complete the process of lighting your mouth on fire with a spicy pineapple margarita. Chipotle and pineapple is as brilliant a combination in a drink as it is in tacos al pastor, making this spicy-sweet drink totally addictive.