Friday, June 05, 2009

Ode to Agave

Consider humanity’s greatest inventions: fire, the bicycle, Gutenberg’s printing press, thermoses that know how to keep hot things hot and cold things cold, and Sheldon Brown’s favorite, the pneumatic tire.

All great to be sure, but rounding out the top ten has got to include the marguerita, that delicious concoction of tequila, lime juice, and triple sec liqueur whose charms are legion and whose appeal transcends race, class, gender and, in doing so, offers a model for universal harmony exceeded only by Grateful Dead concerts and Oprah Winfrey sweeps-week shows.

I happen to be sipping one such illustrious libation even as I type, enjoying the soothing balm it offers to the pains and disappointments of the busy work week just past. With each swallow of the delightful elixir, my cares and woes melt away concurrently with the ice in my glass and if any further proof be needed of the drink’s effectiveness, it’s even made me appreciate the turn of a phrase here and there in this particular edition of this increasingly irregular spewing forth of 327 words.

My version of the drink is quite simple: three parts tequila—100 percent agave is de rigeur, and my favorite brand by far El Tesoro de Don Miguel—two parts lime juice—fresh-squeezed is highly preferred, but I’m not averse, especially if it’s a party, to using bottled, as long as it’s not doctored with anything else—and one part triple sec—fancy margueritas call for Cointreau, but to my taste that’s overkill; anyway, I think I prefer the slightly metallic flavor of the cheaper liqueur; the good stuff overwhelms the tequila in my not-so-humble opinion.

I throw everything into a cocktail shaker filled with ice, dump in a couple tablespoons of sugar and shake vigorously. The mixture, ice and all, is then transferred to a rocks glass where it then begins its journey into my stomach and eventually, frontal lobes, to be repeated as necessary, like right now.


Anonymous Tommy Williams said...

Have you ever tried using agave nectar as the sweetener instead of sugar? I wonder whether any of the common flavors of the agave plant are illuminated that way or whether it makes no difference at all.

It's worth an experiment some day in any event.

7:07 PM  

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