Tucson: Winners of World Margarita Championship

Margarita cocktail

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Here are the results of the World Margarita Champtionship. My apologies as this was the first time I could get to my computer in a few days. The event sparkled from beginning to end with good weather, good food, good cocktails, a few laughs, and lots of friendly people. I brought a friend who was visiting from Los Angeles and she said, “People in Tucson are so nice.”

Not a judge but like the 99% or the drinking people, I voted for the Lodge on the Desert’s margarita because it was made with Grand Marnier pearls. Have you ever heard of such a thing? It pushed all my buttons in a really good way. However, it was not the winner. Here are the winners…

The People’s Choice award went to Julio Blanco at Marinaterra Hotel & SPA San Carlos, Sonora Mexico (not a Tucson restaurant).  The winning creation, the “Margarita Marinaterra” margarita, was fresh and spicy blend of  original ingredients, unique to San Carlos, Mexico like Chamoy, Tajin Chile, Dry Mango, etc. (récipe below) and Sauza Hornitos tequila. (This was my second choice.)

The judges gave the World’s Greatest Margarita award to Mario Rocha of La Fuente who created the “Tamarindo Margarita” – a delightful and unique medley with a play on the traditional balanced sour recipe featuring tamarind accents which wowed the judges. Avion tequila was used in the creation of this award winning drink.

A new award presented this year – the Food Writers Prize went to Banquet Chef Javier Castro at Sol Casino for his outstanding dish – Anchiote Pulled Pork Tacos with Piloncilla Onion Jam, Cabbage Slaw with Minted Radish and Toasted Almonds.  which was selected by judges as the most Margarita- friendly dish at the event.  (Excellent!)

From the press release…

A special thanks, to Vonage, sponsor of the World Margarita Championship™ stage and to all the premium tequila sponsors that provided the base of the margaritas:  Patron, Milagro, Sauza Hornitos, Espolon, Cabo Wabo, Avion, Corralejo and Sauza Tres Generationes.

The winning mixologists will take the stage again Saturday night with Master Mixologist Dale DeGroff in the Grand Lounge at the Grand Tasting event on Saturday, October 29th at Loews Ventana Canyon (6-9pm).

Festival Tickets still available: Tickets can be purchased for the Grand Tasting ($65 / $75 at the door) and the Copper Chef Challenge & BBQ on Sunday, October 30th featuring the main event competition between current Copper Chef Addam Buzzalini (Maynards Market and Kitchen) and Chef Ryan Clark (Lodge on the Desert) for ($35/40 at the door ~ $10 for kids 16 and under).

Restaurant:  La Fuente Restaurant
Bartender:  Mario Rocha
Name of Margarita:  Tamarindo Margarita
Tequila Used:  Avion Tequila
Glass used:  14 oz cactus margarita glass

Recipe:
1 tbl Course salt
½ tsp chili powder
½ tsp tamarind pulp
1 tsp sugar
2oz tequila
1oz Grand Marnier
½ oz lime juice
½ oz orange juice
1 full tamarindo fruit
1 lime wheel

1.    Boil tamarind fruit
2.    Mix all ingredients and blend also strain out pulp
3.    Add tequila and triple sec
4.    Add chili powder to rim
5.    Fill cup with ice and serve

Restaurant:  Marinaterra Hotel & SPA San Carlos, Sonora Mexico
Bartender:  Julio Blanco
Name of Margarita:  Margarita Marinaterra
Tequila Used:  Sauza Hornitos
Glass used:  Margarita Glass

Recipe:
Lemon Juice
Tequila
Orange Liquor
Jamaica concentrate
Chamoy
Tajin Chile
Dry Mango
Mexican Candy

In a blender add: ice, lemon juice, tequila, orange liquor, and all the ingredients, for garnish put a piece of lemon, dry mango and the Mexican candy.

Margarita Description:
Fresh, a little spicy, original ingredients, unique to San Carlos, Mexico

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