The Rest of the Best: Houston's Top 10 Margaritas

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Photo by Troy Fields
So many tequilas, so little sobriety to tackle them all...
For the next 20 weeks, we'll be rounding up the runners-up to our 2011 Best of Houston® winners. In many categories, picking each year's winner is no easy task. We'll be spotlighting 20 of those categories, in which the winner had hefty competition from other Houston bars and restaurants.

If you were lucky enough to get in the door at last night's packed Tequila & Tamales event, you just may have found a new favorite margarita in town. In case you didn't, here's our guide to where you can indulge in a cocktail that's every bit a winter drink as it is a summer cocktail.

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Photo by Ms. Pants
It wouldn't be a margarita list without 'em.
10. Xuco Xicana

Home of both the original El Patio margarita and their own house blends, this Midtown Tex-Mex mecca lets you go traditional or upscale.

9. El Patio

The original "Club No Minors" still cranks out some of the headiest margs in Houston. And, yes, they're still neon blue.

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Photo by Groovehouse
Goode Co. Seafood proves that a place doesn't have to be Mexican to have good margs.
8. Goode Co. Seafood

A margarita and a tumbler full of shrimp campechana here, and I'm in Gulf Coast seafood heaven. It's a timeless pairing, like crunchy peanut butter and grape jelly. Both are a little pricey, but they're top quality...plus, you're dining in an old, restored rail car, and that can't be beat.

7. Spanish Village

The secret to the margaritas at Spanish Village was helpfully revealed by Houstonist's Kaylan Tannahill back in 2009: "They do not serve frozen margaritas, rather they freeze the lime juice which fractures when the drink is mixed." Just one more thing to love about the old Medical Center favorite (that, and the queso).

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14 comments
Fuegodelmar
Fuegodelmar

Spanish Village gets my vote! Nothing like those chards of icey-limey goodness.And the place has soul, having hosted celebs and hollywood pass-thrus alike.

MallRat
MallRat

I am loving Don Julio's (on Westheimer in the old La Strada location) $0.99 house margaritas M-F from11-7.  

Sean Beck
Sean Beck

Thanks for the love and kind words. We are thrilled to be part of Houston's vibrant landscape.  While this city may not have a dominant cuisine, we do have a dominant drink... the margarita. So many great spots in this city, including bars and non-Mexican restaurants, put out fantastic versions.  We are thrilled to be included in such a collection.   Keep drinking Agave everyone be it Tequila, Sotol or Mezcal.  

Tracy
Tracy

Thank you Katharine!!!  Merry Christmas

Terry Alexander
Terry Alexander

Northside represent! In order of preference:

Alicia'sHacienda IsabellCasa Imperial

Macayo's gets an honorable mention. Simply because they have the most potent margarita's on my end of town but they add "Angry Juice" to them. I don't drink them anymore as they turn me into an asshole.TA

Lauren
Lauren

Hugo's, El Gran Malo, TQLA, and original Ninfa's are all good margaritas. Chuy's--sorry, I don't get it. But Maria Selma DEFINITELY deserves to be on this list. Their house margaritas are great, and their premium ritas are out of this world. Plus less expensive than most others, esp. at happy hour.

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

I must be the only person who's yet to be swayed by Maria Selma. I need to give that place another shot, it seems. As for Chuy's... Their Texas Tinis and the New Mexican-style margaritas with Hatch chiles? Heaven. Smooth, spicy heaven.

Lauren
Lauren

Here's my advice, for what it's worth: Try the ultimate margarita. Top-shelf tequila and fresh juices for $8, or $5 for happy hour and all day on Mondays. Then skip the fancy stuff on the menu and get some fish tacos on their home-made corn tortillas. $9 for three tacos (you can mix and match, other types are good too, but the fish ones rock).

Jen
Jen

Agreed - Maria Selma has great margaritas!

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

FYI, we'll have our list of winners and photos up from Tequila & Tamales on Monday morning.  :)

HW
HW

The Don'Key in Pasadena should be on the list. Unless the list is really just for places in town. Honorable mention? :)

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

I've never been there myself. What else do you order there to go with the margaritas?

Matthew
Matthew

one that is missing, that i think deserves consideration is cyclone anaya's. excellent 'ritas, imo.

Jalapeno
Jalapeno

If only they had good food to go with it.

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