How many margaritas will be made today?
More important, how many will be worth drinking? Well, always start with a good tequila.
Riazul Premium Tequila from Texas makes excellent ones. They stand out in all three styles. Riazul Silver ($50) delivers a smooth, clean and satisfying drink, a blanco that contributes to a first-class margarita. Riazul Reposado ($53) definitely enriches the cocktail but stands on its own, with a trace of tropical fruit, citrus and spice.
DeLeón Tequila enters the luxury market, with handsomely bottled, elegant odes to agave in the $125-plus category. DeLeón Diamante, refined and silky, is a silver sipper, very good on the rocks. DeLeón Reposado ups the ante and should receive minimal interference. Have it neat.
For an artisanal twist, there's the complex trio of Ilegal Mezcal. The youthful, smoky Ilegal Mezcal Joven ($55); earthier, fruity, peppery Ilegal Mezcal Reposado ($69); and the dried fruit, spice and vanilla combo that defines Ilegal Mezcal Anejo ($110), are a stirring set from Oaxaca, each a celebration in a bottle. The Joven fuels a lively margarita.
Hard to resist a wine dubbed 2009 Mommy's Time Out, especially at $10 or less. This garganega-pinot grigio blend is uncomplicated and refreshing.
For the rosé Mom, Croteaux Vineyards in Southold makes three subtle, fruity charmers, each $18. The 2010 Merlot 3 Rosé is the biggest, ripe and ready; the 2010 Merlot 314, medium-bodied and food-friendly, is very versatile; and the 2010 Merlot 181 suits the season as a refreshing sipper.
Of course, Mom may go for a shot of tequila, too.