As friends, acquaintances, and your Mom all know, I enjoy cocktails and punches and tipples and toddies. If you look around this very site you’ll note that I’m no stranger to sharing drink recipes. This afternoon delight is a regional favorite of Austin, Texas, and was introduced to me by my awesome Longhorn sister-by-marriage. Tales of this drink had reached me, but I was skeptical. A Mexican Martini sounds a peanut butter and salami sandwich—a combination of good things that should not go together. And I am man enough to tell you that I was wrong.
When asked to describe this drink, I tell them “It’s like a margarita and a martini got married and had a baby. A beautiful, delicious baby.” The fruity acidity of the margarita flavors mingle with the salty-savoriness of green olive that will make you tilt your head like a confused dog. In a good way.
This Austin staple has a number of variations, and after playing with it for the better part of 2014 this is how I currently do it.
Cocktail Shaker & Strainer
Muddler (or wooden spoon with a thick handle)
Tequila (Blanco or “Silver”) , 2 oz.
Orange Liqueur, 1.5 oz. (such as Triple Sec, or be fancy and use Grand Marnier which is traditional)
Sweet & Sour Mix, 2 oz.
Club Soda, splash
Lemon Juice, a few drops
Green Olives (2) & Brine (just a few drops!)
Orange (roughly 1/3 of the fruit)
Lime (half the fruit)
Note the First: If you want a more traditional Mexican Martini, use the Grand Marnier and a splash of lemon-lime soda instead of club soda and lemon juice.
Note the Second: You can serve this in a salt-rimmed martini glass—margarita-style—or not. Your choice!
Cut the fruit into wedges and toss them into the bottom of your cocktail shaker, then muddle until you’ve gotten the juice out and done some real damage to the rind. (This gets essential oils that really raise the character of your final drink.) Yes, you can punk out and just use store-bought juice (an ounce of each) but it won’t be the same—so don’t do it. Then pour in the tequila, orange liqueur, sweet & sour mix, club soda, lemon juice, and a few drops of brine from the olive jar. Shake with ice and pour into a chilled martini glass with the two waiting olives.
Sip as a delicious stand-alone drink or eat with southwest flavors.