How to take your margarita to the next level

“Tippling.” What a delightful word. Words are something done well in The Tippling Bros. A Lime and a Shaker: Discovering Mexican-Inspired Cocktails. I appreciate that. You wouldn’t expect verbal dexterity out of guys who also refer to themselves en español as The Borracho Bros. which basically translates to The Drunk Guys. But a way with words is what you get out of Tad Carducci and Paul Tanguay. Also known as The Tippling Brothers, they wrote this lil’ homage to the agave plant. If all drunk dudes were as interesting, witty, and creative as they, bars would have to become wedding chapels. And not just in Vegas.

Of course, they do say that to them, the word “tippling” doesn’t just refer to staying “perpetually buzzed.” They tipple not just in booze but in knowledge. Perpetual learners, they are forever adding to their tricks good drinks. This education is distributed in fun-to-read tipples throughout the chapters.

The first chapter focuses on drinks that are traditional. Margarita lovers, brace yourselves! Then comes the chapter on craft. If you like infusing and muddling, this one is for you. Next up is a chapter on spice. They wax poetic on hot sauce. As a heat lover, I was particularly delighted. There is also a chapter on celebration drinks, where you can learn how to properly prepare a large batch of your favorite cocktail. Much like reducing recipes, it is not as straightforward as you’d think! So you will learn as you imbibe.

As The Tippling Brothers put it “there is nothing Yoda-worthy, but we think are are some little jewels you can incorporate.” Some of my favorite jewels include tequila 101, and drinks with intriguing names. Who names drinks in reference to Homer’s Odyssey? The Tippling Brothers, that’s who. Their cocktails are to beverages as Shakespeare is to words: witty and somewhat acidic.

That’s a good thing. And so is this drink! I won’t ramble about the book or the drink much longer, as I want you to get shaking. Suffice to say this beauty involves a little bit more love and attention than your margarita mix, but you will be rewarded with a vibrantly-hued and refreshing drink that says “lets party…maybe with a book”. Okay so a book is how I party. But do your own thing! Do with it what you will just don’t drive. The Tippling Bros. WILL get you tipsy!

Ps I’ve been doing a little extracurricular shaking of late, check it out!

Blood Orange-Cinnamon Margarita adapted from The Tippling Bros. A Lime and a Shaker: Discovering Mexican-Inspired Cocktails by Tad Carducci and Paul Tanguey

For cinnamon syrup:

Make a simple syrup by bringing equal parts water and sugar to a boil. Toss in some cinnamon sticks (Two sticks to every cup of syrup) and simmer for 20 minutes. Allow to cool then strain out the sticks and refrigerate.

For glass:

  • 1/2 lime
  • 1 Tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tbsp. sugar

Mix the salt, cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl or on a plate. Run the lime around the rim of an old-fashioned tumbler then dip in the salt mixture. Put it in the freezer while you make your drink.

For drink:

  • 2 oz. blanco tequila
  • 1/2 oz. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 3/4 oz. freshly squeezed blood orange juice
  • 3/4 oz cinnamon-infused simple syrup
  • slice of blood orange, to garnish

Shake up the tequila, juices and syrup. Put an oversized ice cube or so in the old-fashioned tumbler and strain the drink in. Garnish with the slice of blood orange.