• JulesAZ

8 Ways To Celebrate National Margarita Day


We love a good excuse to have a drink especially when times have been tough during the pandemic. Monday is National Margarita Day, so you’ll have no choice but to grab one and celebrate! According to the National Margarita Day website, February 22 was selected after a man named Todd McCalla wanted to spread his love for margaritas around the world. There’s much debate as to who actually invented the classic drink, but we do know it originated in the 1930s to ‘40s. The first known publication of a margarita recipe came in the December 1953 issue of Esquire and called for an ounce of tequila, a dash of triple sec and the juice of half a lime or lemon. It’s now the most common tequila-based drink in the United States today and is served on the rocks, blended with ice or straight up. Arizona has quite a few places with outstanding and unique margaritas, and here’s a list of a few places to hit up this holiday.


Blanco Tacos + Tequila is equally known for its food and drinks as you can see from its name. Start out with some guacamole and queso with tortilla chips or try some shrimp, chicken or carne asada Fajitas or a Short Rib Machaca Cheese Crisp. There are also six margaritas to choose from, all made from fresh lime. The Jalapeño and Pineapple is both sour and spicy, and the Smashed Watermelon is super refreshing. There’s a skinny option too. Plus, Blanco’s downtown Phoenix location is offering 50 percent off your bill on National Margarita Day. It can be applied to an online order or be used when dining in. Blanco Tacos + Tequila has locations in Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tucson; www.blancotacostequila.com


The obvious choice for this list is a restaurant with margarita in the name! That holds true for the next two places we’re highlighting. First up is Urban Margarita in Glendale. Owners David and Kimberly have a passion for fresh, flavorful food like the Garlic Shrimp Tostadas and the Kickin' Chicken. David has fine dining experience and draws on his New Mexican heritage in many delicious dishes. The star of the show is the margaritas, though, with 10 different varieties to choose from. You’ve got the house and skinny versions along with more adventurous ones like the Cucumber Jalapeño, Elderflower and Prickly Pear. You truly can’t go wrong no matter what you choose. Urban Margarita is located at 6685 W. Beardsley Road, Glendale; 623.561.6674; www.urbanmargarita.com


Modern Margarita has an impressive number of 14 margaritas available to order plus a serious food menu with items like a Taco Flight; build-your-own quesadillas, burritos and lettuce bowls; and the Ultimate Green Chili Burger. Many of the margaritas come in the normal and fish bowl size if you’re sharing with a few pals. There’s the OG Rita and OG Rustic if you’re seeking something a bit more familiar. The Frozen Rita is blended and comes in flavors like mango, passionfruit and watermelon. The Red Bull Rita will definitely give you a burst of energy while the Apple Spiced Margarita and Rosa’s Rose made with sparkling wine are unique and different. Modern Margarita is located at 5410 E High Street, Phoenix; 602.795.8111; www.modernmargarita.com


It makes sense that Cien Agaves would be known for its margaritas. Agave azul or blue agave is used in the production of tequila, and the margaritas at Cien Agaves are made from 100 percent Agave Tequila and fresh squeezed lime juice. The Cien-A-Rita is made with Tradicional Silver Tequila and can be enjoyed frozen or on the rocks. The Mango Tango has a chile-lime salt rim, and the Pom-Berry has pomegranate juice and blackberries. If you like beer with your tequila try the Cerveza-Rita, and you’ve got a partner, order The Gigante. It’s a giant 56 ounce Sauza Silver Cien-A-Rita on the rocks. Soak up the alcohol with a big plate of Los Nachos or the Enchilada Special with your choice or red or green sauce and protein. Cien Agaves has locations in North Scottsdale and Old Town Scottsdale; www.cienagaves.com


Crujiente Tacos was Phoenix New Times choice for “Best Margarita” last year, and we’d have to agree. The Premier Cru Margarita is made with Blue Agave Tequila, house agave syrup, fresh squeezed lime and muddled orange. The Arcadia Margarita adds in some cucumber, cilantro and jalapeño while the Coconut Margarita has a bit of sweetness. The Passion Fruit Serrano Margarita is also not to be missed. You’ll be doubly lucky if you go for a drink on National Margarita Day which falls on a Monday — margaritas are just $5 from 3 to 10 p.m. As far as the food goes, you can’t go wrong with the Smothered Frites Street Fries made with pork belly and house-made quick kimchi, Salsa Trio with fresh tortilla chips or the Lamb Tacos. Crujiente Tacos is located at 3961 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix; 602).687.7777; www.crutacos.com


New plant-based eatery and fun hangout spot GuacStar Kitchen and Cantina has a whole celebration planned for February 22. The house La Casa margaritas made with avocado pit and cilantro infused Corazon Single Estate tequila will be $2 off. The Flight to Mexico will also be $2 less. That’s a three-cocktail flight of the La Casa, the Sex in Mexico City and an Amorita — a frozen concoction made with Exotico 100 percent blue agave tequila, Protocolo rose wine, maraschino cherry liqueur, lime juice and red sangria tea-infused simple syrup. There will also be $10 Endless Enchiladas. Save room for a Churro Waffle for dessert. GuacStar is located at 920 E. University Drive, #204, Tempe; 480.219.9272; www.guacstar.com


Macayo's has been around for 75 years, and a big part of its success is its margaritas. There's the Simply Perfect Margarita made with Patrón Silver Tequila and Patrón Citrónge Lime. The Wildberry Margarita is served frozen and features strawberry, blackberry and raspberry flavors. The Texas Margarita has 1800 Reposado Tequila, Grand Marnier and orange. There's also the Margarita Flight where you can pick four flavors like peach and apple. In honor of National Margarita Day, guests can purchase Macayo's iconic Senor Bob and Senorita Cha Cha mugs for $7.50 (normally priced at $11.99) and get $2.50 magarita refills in their mugs. Be sure to order some food too like Macayo's Famous Cheese Crisp and the award-winning Green Chile Pork Stew. Macayo's has locations in Glendale, Goodyear, Mesa, Phoenix, Tempe and Surprise; www.macayo.com


Z'Tejas Southwest Grill is Southwestern cuisine with bold, flavorful twists made with fresh ingredients. There are Mexican classics on the menu like Chili Pork Verde and Carne Asada. Other specialities include the Smoke Chicken Chile Relleno and Adobo Chorizo Meatloaf. There are also seven different types of margaritas ranging from White Peach and Watermelon Strawberry to Jalapeño Cucumber and the traditional Z'Tejas Margarita with a tajin and salt rim, frozen or on the rocks. Z'Tejas has a special going to celebrate the holiday that will be offered all day long — the Little Larry. It's 4 ounces of margarita for the price of $2.22 in honor of the 2/22/21 date. It's served on the rocks or frozen. Z'Tejas Southwest Grill has locations in Chandler and Phoenix; www.ztejas.com