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Cover The Original Margarita Cover The Original Margarita

Discover the Original Margarita

Refreshing, versatile, and easy to make
It’s no surprise the Margarita is one of the world’s favorite cocktails. Created in 1948 by Margaret Sames, the original recipe is simple and has remained unchanged since the beginning: Cointreau, tequila blanco, fresh lime juice, and a salt rim. In fact, Cointreau and the Margarita are so inseparable that Sames famously proclaimed,

A Margarita without Cointreau is not worth its salt.
Margaret Sames

Original Margarita

 

margarita logo

Since its inception, this timeless concoction has gone on to become a true classic and inspired countless variations.

 

Margarita historyMargarita RecipeMargarita SaltMargarita Playlist

DID YOU KNOW?

The Original Margarita

TOP #8

The Margarita ranks #8 in the best-selling cocktails around the world, with the U.S. in lead position, Australia at #2, France #5, and U.K. #6. *

1948

The original Margarita was created in 1948 by Margarita Sames, an American socialite known for hosting notoriously lavish parties in Acapulco. She famously said, “A Margarita without Cointreau is not worth its salt ”.

THE DRINK

Over the years, Margaret served her cocktail to her guests, referring to it as “The Drink ” **. “The Drink” became “The Margarita” after Bill, Margaret’s husband, gave her a set of champagne glasses etched with her nickname on them.

INFLUENCE

According to the legend, Margaret had no intention of promoting her cocktail, but her influential friends — including Nick Hilton, movie star John Wayne, and Joseph Drown, owner of the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles — loved it so much that they spread the word.

KEY DATES

The Margarita is so beloved that it’s not only a popular cocktail for Cinco de Mayo; it even has its own day: February 22 has been named National Margarita Day. Cheers… and mark these dates!

EASY

It only takes 4 ingredients to make a perfect Margarita: 30 ml Cointreau, 50 ml tequila blanco, 20 ml fresh lime juice, and a salt rim. That’s all!

TWIST

The versatility of the Cointreau Original Margarita is a never-ending story. Twist your original base with your favorite teas, fruits, spices, or salts and you have a totally new cocktail. Find more than 30 recipes in our cocktail section

BEST

According to a third-party study***, a Margarita prepared with Cointreau has a superior aromatic intensity; is richer in citrus, green, floral, and fruity notes; and has a longer finish on the palate. Oh, and it’s fresher too!

SHAKEN

While the original recipe is shaken and served in the eponymous Margarita glass, this cocktail thrives in many forms. Try the icy blended version and serve it in a tumbler to make a splash.

SALT!

Psst! Salt isn’t just for decoration. It’s also an extraordinary flavor enhancer. Get wild by exploring different tastes (herbal, smoky, zesty) and origins (Egypt, France, Hawaii) or kick it up a notch by creating your own blend at home.

 

AN ACAPULCO GIRL AT HEART

Margaret “Margarita” Sames
Today, the original Margarita has gone on to become a staple in bars and homes alike.

AN ACAPULCO GIRL AT HEART

The story of the original Margarita started in 1948 in Acapulco. The Mexican coast had officially transformed into a jet-set destination visited by the who’s who of the time. Margaret “Margarita” Sames, a wealthy American socialite known for hosting notoriously lavish parties with extravagant twists, needed a creation for one of her soirées. Attended by the rich and famous, housing international guests, and often created with elaborate themes, a Margaret Sames party was known to go on for days. For this particular one, she wanted a good daytime cocktail that you could enjoy by the pool. Naturally, she turned to two of her favorite spirits: Cointreau and tequila.

After trying numerous variations, Sames landed on her signature recipe, with lime juice to balance the alcohol and a light dusting of salt on the glass rim for a touch of flair. An immediate success, “The Drink” came to be known as the “Margarita”, a name coined by Sames’s husband, and the recipe spread by word of mouth by Sames’s influential friends.

I wanted to create a good day time cocktail that you could enjoy by the pool.
Margaret Sames

Margarita

COINTREAU, AN ORIGINAL MEMBER

Alfred Cointreau
Alfred Cointreau, sixth generation of the Cointreau family

COINTREAU, AN ORIGINAL MEMBER

HOW DID COINTREAU EARN ITS PLACE IN ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR COCKTAILS IN THE WORLD?

There is a reason it was one of Sames’s favorite liqueurs. Cointreau acts as a flavor catalyst when mixed into cocktails and has a proven sensory impact. According to an independent study on a variety of Margarita recipes, an original Margarita made with Cointreau demonstrates superior organoleptic qualities and a very aromatic, fresh, and balanced sensory profile. The Margarita holds a special place in Cointreau’s history as well, so much so that the Cointreau family passed the recipe down through the generations.

“My siblings and I used to go to our grandparents’ house regularly and my grandmother taught us how to welcome our friends and guests. This included how to make a margarita. I remember I was hooked after I made my first one with my grandmother. She was the teacher, showing us the appropriate glass to use and which drinks to serve to guests. My grandfather was the storyteller; he told us stories about his grandfather, the creator of Cointreau.”

 
The Original Margarita

The Original Margarita

30 ml Cointreau
50 ml blanco tequila
20 ml fresh lime juice

1. Make a salt rim on your class
2. Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice
3. Shake vigorously
4. Strain into a Margarita glass
5. Garnish with a lime wheel

Find yours

Discover how to mix the Margarita

 

The Salt

Margarita wheel
"Salt is one of the easiest and best ways to put a twist on the original Margarita."

The Salt

There are countless twists on the Margarita recipe, but what about its garnish? It turns out the salt plays an important role in the Margarita’s personality.

Historically, salt has been known as a powerful flavor enhancer. Try a Margarita with and without salt and you will find that the flavor is more complex in the salty version. Why? Because salt makes the taste buds more sensitive. Plus, as it does for food, saltiness balances out bitterness and brings out the sweet notes.

PLAY WITH IT

There are many varieties of salt coming from all around the world, but they fall into two categories: sea salt, which is harvested by evaporating ocean water and has no additives, and mineral salt, an iron-rich salt that is found underground and comes in many shapes and colors.

COINTREAU’S FAVORITE SALTS

When creating Cointreau, Édouard Cointreau traveled to the four corners of the world to source the most superior oranges. And this internationalism is part of what makes Cointreau’s flavor so unique. The same can be said for salts; the origin brings a certain nuance to the flavor and can put a subtle spin on your recipes.

COINTREAU’S FAVORITE SALTS

Fleur de sel de Guérande

Fleur de sel de Guérande

The mythical fleur de sel from France’s Atlantic coast. Known for its texture, flavor, and finesse, this is a must for any home mixologist or chef.

Pink Himalayan salt

Pink Himalayan salt

Considered the purest in the world, this mineral salt’s pretty hue comes from its high iron content.

Egyptian salt

Egyptian salt

This frosty looking mineral salt could be mistaken for snowflakes if you didn’t know better. Hailing from Egypt’s White Desert, it’s one of the most refined salts in the world.

Blue Persian salt

Blue Persian salt

This rare salt is extracted from the Iranian mountains and is dotted with a surprising sapphire blue color. On the flavor front, it brings a subtle, almost lemony acidity.

Black Hawaiian salt

Black Hawaiian salt

This dark salt is a mix of sea salt and activated charcoal-rich black lava rock. The salt has a distinct, slightly smoky flavor.

CUSTOM SALT CREATIONS

CITRUS SALT

CITRUS SALT

Fleur de sel, dried orange peel, rosemary

THYME AND AGAIN SALT

THYME AND AGAIN SALT

Black Persian salt, dried lemon peel, thyme

ELECTRIC SALT

ELECTRIC SALT

Blue Persian salt, fresh Szechuan button

SALT AND PEPPA

SALT AND PEPPA’

Pink Himalayan salt, Timut pepper

THE EXPERTS HAVE SPOKEN

Margarita stamp
A PROVEN SENSORY IMPACT
The renowned Margarita cocktail, when prepared with Cointreau liqueur, demonstrates outstanding organoleptic qualities and a very aromatic, fresh, and balanced sensory profile.

THE EXPERTS HAVE SPOKEN

COINTREAU’S CONTRIBUTION TO THE MARGARITA COCKTAIL

Eye — The Cointreau-based Margarita is perceived as fresh and visually appealing.

Nose — The Cointreau recipe has a superior aromatic intensity. It is also richer in citrus, green, floral, and fruity notes (orange and mandarin pulp).

Palate — A Margarita made with Cointreau is very fruity and offers an optimal acidity-sweetness balance. It also has a long finish on the palate.

***

 

The cointreau original margarita playlist

The cointreau original margarita playlist
THE ORIGINAL MARGARITA MIX, THE PERFECT TOOL TO ENJOY A COINTREAU MARGARITA PARTY !

The cointreau original margarita playlist

THIS PLAYLIST IS A COMBINATION OF :

  •  Latin inspirations to echo the Margarita cocktail, summer vibes & holidays
  •  Positive sunny pool party / cruising themed songs 
  •  French heritage mixing the Parisian chic, the French seduction spirit & the French riviera from the 50s/60s
  •  A mix of a variety of songs from different eras throughout time to express the strong legacy of the brand

Find the playlist here

* Ipsos cocktail study 2017, Crimson & Google Analytics 2017-2019, IWSR 2018 / CGA Mixed Drinks Report Q1 2019 / Business Insider, The 50 best-selling cocktails in the world in 2019

** Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 1994

*** Fifteen-panelist study conducted by Institute IMASENS for Cointreau, accredited by COFRAC in September 2017.