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It's National Margarita Day!

Baba Rita Margarita at Babalu.jpeg

To celebrate, you, of course, need to enjoy a margarita.

Whether you prefer them frozen or on the rocks, Memphis has plenty of restaurants that make a good margarita.

If you want to make one at home, no worries. I asked Michelle Laverty, who is the bar manager for Babalu, to share her top five margarita-making tips, plus a recipe.

Choose the right tequila.

Lav, that’s what Michelle goes by, said 100% agave tequilas are best and come in a variety of price points.

Identify a flavor profile.

No matter which flavor you go with, Lav says avoid using premade mixes that are often overly sweet and are definitely not as good as using fresh ingredients.

Mix the ingredients properly.

Lav says to invest in a shaker and … shake, shake, shake!

Salt the rim.

It’s easy to do. Simply pour coarse salt onto a plate, wet the rim of your glass with water or lime juice and dip it into salt. Volia! It’s done.

Add a finishing touch.

Lav said to impress your friends with a fun garnish that relates to the flavor profile of your margarita. That could be a lime, a grapefruit slice or fresh mint leaves.

Lav makes a mean traditional margarita, but she also is known for her creative versions of this tequila cocktail. Her #Mint2Be Julep Rita is a fun twist on a margarita made with bourbon. Visit wknofm.org for the recipe, or head to Babalu to try one.

This is Jennifer Chandler with The Weekly Dish. Cheers!

#Mint2Be Julep Rita

  • 1 ounce sour
  • 1 ounce mint lime syrup
  • 1 ounce blood orange juice
  • 1/2 ounce triple sec
  • 2 ounces Jim Beam Peach Bourbon
  • Mint leaves

Place the sour, syrup, orange juice, triple sec and bourbon in a shaker with ice. Shake to combine. Serve over ice. Garnish with fresh mint leaves.