It’s February 22, Margarita Day. Getting to the bottom of the Margarita

The Margarita: She’s from Mexico, Señores, and she is lovely to look at, exciting and provocative.

Or so said Esquire back in 1953.

In its classic form—tequila, lime juice and Cointreau or Triple Sec, served in a glass with a salted rim—it is a perfect combination of sweet, salty, sour and bitter.

Actually, Imbibe Magazine, who should know, don’t believe a Mexican invented the margarita since there’s no Mexican cocktail culture.

And the locals don’t even drink it.

Margaritas: the locals don’t even drink ’em


Margarita – More than just a girl’s name


Carlos “Danny” Herrera, the owner of Tijuana restaurant Rancho La Gloria, claims he invented the drink in 1938. What inspired him? A gorgeous dancer.  

Restaurant goer Marjorie King declared she was allergic to all spirits except tequila but didn’t like it straight. So Herrera worked around the typical tequila shot (which is taken with salt and lime) and threw together the margarita.

Lots of Margaritas claim namesake status – Dallas socialite Margarita Sames, Margarita Henkel, Margarita Cansino (you may know her as Rita Hayworth).

But maybe the Margarita wasn’t named for a woman at all.

The Margarita could have been the Daisy

The margarita may just be a variation of a cocktail from the 1800’s: the Daisy.

A mix of alcohol, citrus juice, and grenadine served over shaved ice, it was popular during prohibition.  There were gin daisies and whiskey daisies and, eventually, inevitably, tequila daisies.

Interestingly, margarita means “daisy” in Spanish. The only difference between the Daisy and the margarita is that the former was made with brandy and the latter with tequila.

No matter how fizzy fuzzy the history of the margarita is, the result is the same: a perfect drink.

Siobhan O’Shea is a freelance writer. She writes about pretty much everything but especially likes to bring readers’ attention to new tech, marketing, human behavior, and other oddities.