This Classic Drink Is Still America’s Favorite Cocktail

updated Apr 30, 2019
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(Image credit: Cabeca de Marmore)

Whether it comes frozen or on the rocks, or if you’re on the beach or celebrating Cinco de Mayo, the margarita has long been America’s go-to warm weather drink (or what you drink when you’re missing the warm weather). Tangy, sweet, a little salty — the margarita hits all the right notes. A new study confirms that Americans still call the margarita their favorite cocktail. Well almost all Americans. In Chicago, drinkers buck the trend.

As MarketMarch reports, the study conducted by Nielsen CGA, found that in cities like Miami, Boston, Los Angeles, and New York, the margarita still reigns supreme (while the martini comes in at a close second, except in Miami, where the mojito took second place).

In Chicago, however, the margarita didn’t even make the top five favorite drinks. In fact, they turn their noses up at the refreshing sweetness of the margarita, and opt for the bourbon-based old-fashioned. Perhaps the residents of the Windy City are just made of tougher stuff than the rest of us. Still, it’s not like the old fashioned is, well, old-fashioned, if you’ll forgive the joke. The cocktail ranked third on the list of the nation’s favorites.

The Nielsen research also found that most Americans are willing to pay at least $9 for a drink — which is pricey for even the best-made margarita. If you’re not quite as keen to pay the price for an artisan cocktail, you’re in the luck: the margarita is simple enough to make well at home. All you need is agave nectar, tequila, and lime juice to make the most basic — and most pure — margarita. On the rocks not your style? You don’t need a slushie machine to make the perfect frozen margarita; a blender or even a food processor does the job. And as the weather gets warmer, you’ll want to master these recipes to impress your friends and serve at parties.