With a group of trusted friends we embarked on a journey few would dare. We were in search of the elusive and rare “perfect Margarita”. We began our journey on the island of Isla Mujeres in Mexico on Miguel Hidalgo Street. The contestants were told to bring us their best Margarita. Each judge awarded between zero and 10 points to the Margarita entry and the totals were averaged between the number of judges for the final score. Judges included Bonnie, Tom, Ronda, Michael, Neena, Bruce, Kathy, Roeland, Anita, Debbie, Derek, Andrea, Ruth, Virginia, and Juanita. Here are our results.
Don Cheapo – The first place we visited was a small family owned restaurant. Don Cheapo used Antiguo de Herradura Reposado and their own mix for a pretty good start. At $200 pesos this was a great deal with an average score of 5.125 from eight judges.
Amigos Restaurant – This place did a fine job with Jose Cuervo Gold Tequila making a yummy margarita for $300 pesos. Average score 6.5. Food here was also amazing.
Argentina Grill – at $500 pesos this one looked like a real winner in the pretty glasses in which they were served, but at first sip we quickly concluded the recipe had fallen short of our expectations. Ten judges and nobody gave them a score higher than 6. The Tequila they used was Herradura Reposado, but they tried to impress us with the alcohol and not the taste of the Margarita. Ice cubes were too large also. Crushed ice might have helped the flavor. Average score 4.2.
Lola Valentina – We were drawn in by the swings, but the mixologist and Margaritas captured our hearts. We presented the same challenge and this guy took it seriously! He worked up a sweat as he prepared his first masterpiece, the Skinny Margarita with Jalapeño. It was simply delicious. Next he brought on a Patron Margarita that was the perfect recipe of Tequila, fresh lime juice, and Cointreau, followed by cucumber rosemary, pineapple ginger, and strawberry habanero. Each recipe was carefully and eloquently prepared as we gazed on in awe. The prices were higher at about $680 pesos per drink, but worth every penny. Ten judges didn’t give any of the drinks less than an 8 and Lola Valentina was the ONLY one that got a score of 10! The average score was a whopping 9.1. Some of the judges gave up after this place, realizing they would not find a better Margarita on Isla Mujeres. Most of us ordered a second round of our favorite concoction! Without a doubt, the BEST MARGARITA on Isla Mujeres!
As our responsibilities shifted to another island we felt is our duty to carry on the search to follow-up on a place we had been hearing about for years. We packed up the judges and headed for Wet Wendy’s in Cozumel. They impressed us with their pretty glasses and massive slushy-type drinks, but most judged complained that the drinks were just too big and too slurpy. Very strange flavor combinations, such as peanut butter banana and some kind of deep pink drink tasted more like a milk shake than a Margarita. The premium lime Margarita wasn’t bad and scored highest (7 by three of the judges), but the other flavored drinks were left to melt in the pretty little glasses. Average score of 5.6 with 13 judges doing the test.
It was a tough job, but our judges were up for the task. We still have a lot of work to do. Stay tuned!