Basilrita (Basil Margarita)

by Dorothy Reinhold on June 17, 2011

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WINNER! I entered my Basilrita (Basil Margarita) cocktail in the Summer (2012) Cocktail Contest held by The Little Door restaurant in Los Angeles, and guess what? It won! Thanks Little Door, I’m thrilled! They judged it on originality, creativity, use of Farmer’s Market-inspired ingredients, seasonality, taste and the name. Their judges called it “subtle and enchanting,” and the restaurant featured this unique margarita on the new summer cocktail menu.


My windowsill basil plant was calling my name, and it was 5 o’clock somewhere, so necessity being the mother of invention, this Basil Margarita was born.

Al LuceroWhat formula to use with my basil? Last fall I recall reading a simple ratio, from a friend who attended the Association of Food Journalists conference in Santa Fe, NM. He reported that Al Lucero, the author of several books on tequila and margaritas, recommended this simple formula for the perfect margarita:

  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila
  • 1 ounce orange liqueur (Triple sec, Cointreau or Grand Marnier, for example)
  • 1 ounce lime or lemon juice (Lucero prefers lemon juice but lime is more traditional)

I had to go Google Lucero to make sure he knew his stuff. He owns the renown Maria’s Restaurant in Santa Fe, NM, and has written “The Great Margarita Book,” and “Maria’s Real Margarita Book,” both with a foreword by Robert Redford. Yes, THAT Robert Redford.

Satisfied with his credentials, I was ready!

Never underestimate the power of what is in front of you. I also had Meyer lemons sitting on my counter, so they became part of this, as well.


Basilrita (Basil Margarita) from

Basilrita (Basil Margarita) from Shockinglydelicious.comRecipe: Basilrita

  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila
  • 1 ounce orange liqueur (Triple sec, Cointreau or Grand Marnier)
  • 3/4 ounce Meyer lemon juice
  • 1/4 ounce agave syrup
  • 4-5 basil leaves, chopped

Mix all ingredients in a tall cup, and, using an immersion blender, whirl for a minute or so until basil is very finely chopped into the liquid.

Pour into an ice-filled cocktail shaker, and shake for 30 seconds until well chilled. Pour through a strainer into a martini glass. Float a fresh basil leaf on top and serve.

Serves 1.

Basilrita (Basil Margarita) from Shockinglydelicious.compin this please!Pin the image below for Basilrita Basil Margarita to your Pinterest board to save this recipe

Basilrita basil margarita cocktail in a martini glass on

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