The Dish with Deah: National Margarita Day is here. Here’s how to celebrate

dfwnewsa | February 21, 2024 | 0 | Fort Worth , Fort Worth News

The Dish with Deah: National Margarita Day is here. Here’s how to celebrate

A sample of the margarita offerings at Joe T. Garcia’s. (Courtesy photo | Joe T. Garcia’s)
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Where’s your favorite place to grab a classic margarita or a more creative cocktail based on the traditional version?  

Any Texan can tell you that a cold margarita on a hot sunny day is the recommendation of many to cure the summertime blues. Or, in this case, the winter blahs. Is there ever a bad time to pour a margarita in its classic form — tequila, lime juice and triple sec, served in a glass with a salted rim — a perfect combination of sweet, salty, sour and bitter? 

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For more on its frozen origins here in North Texas to the best places to celebrate National Margarita Day, Feb. 22, read on: 

In 1971, Mariano Martinez, the owner of Mariano’s Mexican Cuisine in Dallas, revolutionized the way margaritas were served by introducing the world’s first frozen margarita machine. 

Recognizing the popularity of the traditional margarita, Martinez sought a way to streamline the preparation process and provide customers with a consistently chilled and refreshing experience. Inspired by the frozen drink machines at convenience stores, he repurposed a soft-serve ice cream machine to perfectly blend tequila, triple sec, lime juice and ice.

The result was a slushy, icy concoction that retained all the flavors of the classic margarita but with a hip cool element. Mariano’s invention quickly gained popularity and set a new standard for enjoying margaritas.

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The history of the unfrozen version of the cocktail is more complicated and a few different versions each sound equally plausible. 

One suggests that Carlos “Danny” Herrera created the classic cocktail at his restaurant near Tijuana, Rancho La Gloria, circa 1938. According to the story, Herrera conceptualized the drink for a particular customer, Marjorie King, an aspiring actress with an allergy to all hard alcohol except tequila. Seeking to cater to King’s preferences, he ingeniously crafted the customary elements of a tequila shot — a hint of salt and a wedge of lime — into a revitalizing beverage. 

Yet another contender for the title of inventor is Margarita Sames, a wealthy socialite from Dallas, also the home of the original frozen margarita. Sames asserted that she concocted the drink for her friends at her Acapulco, Mexico, vacation home in 1948, with notable guest Tommy Hilton later incorporating the beverage into the bar menu of his hotel chain. 

However, Anthony Dias Blue’s “The Complete Book of Spirits” introduces an intriguing twist. It reveals that the first importer of Jose Cuervo in the United States had already advertised with the tagline “Margarita: it’s more than a girl’s name” in 1945 — three years before Sames claimed credit for inventing the drink. The mystery of the margarita’s true origin persists, as these competing stories add layers to its fascinating history. 

Dish with Deah

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For more about Deah Mitchell or the Dish with Deah columns, click here.

Wondering where you can spend this festive “holiday” and not break the bank? Here’s a list of restaurants with locations in Arlington, Fort Worth, and other surrounding areas. 

Blue Mesa

Blue Mesa, which has locations in Addison, Fort Worth and Plano, is offering top shelf margaritas for $5 all day long.

BoomerJack’s

Has celebrated in the past with specials on margaritas and appetizers. Check local listings. 

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Buena Vida

Looking to party with your squad? In addition to traditional handcrafted margaritas for one, Buena Vida offers a 3.5 liter celebration-size version made with orange juice.

Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen

At its locations across Dallas-Fort Worth, Cheddar’s is offering a variety of margarita specials to guests on National Margarita Day.

Don Artemio Mexican Heritage

This Fort Worth steakhouse and mezcal lounge is offering specials to celebrate National Margarita Day, including house and top-shelf margaritas.

Enchiladas Olé

Now with two Fort Worth locations, the locally owned restaurant offers a wide selection of margaritas, including a spicy watermelon version, all discounted for happy hour.

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop

This taco chain with locations across Dallas-Fort Worth has margarita  specials.

Joe T. Garcia’s

Every day is “National Margarita Day” at this Fort Worth staple. 

Meso Maya 

Surprising takes on the classic cocktail at Meso Maya Fort Worth include one creamy delight blended with avocado. No better day to try it than a national “holiday.”

On the Border

This Dallas-based chain restaurant with locations across Dallas-Fort Worth is promoting large house margaritas for special discounts on National Margarita Day.

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