Houston's Best Margaritas Reviewed - A Summer Quest

It's time

My best friend Amar and I have a lot in common, including our love for margaritas.  During a conversation about summer plans, we decided it would be a fun challenge to find the best margarita in Houston, a city with dozens, if not hundreds, of Tex-Mex restaurants.  After limiting our candidates to a more reasonable number, my amigo and I were ready to do our tasty research!

Cafe Adobe - home of "Houston's Best Margaritas" say Houston Press, AOL and City Search

Our first stop was Café Adobe, home of “Houston’s Best Margarita” according to Houston Press, AOL, and City Search.  With high expectations, we entered the Tex-Mex destination located at 2111 Westheimer Road.  Eager to judge the margaritas ourselves, we didn’t waste any time before ordering two in the most popular fruit flavor (strawberry).  Conflicting schedules only allotted enough time for us to indulge in one margarita each, but we both agreed that it would take some pretty good tequila and margarita mix to beat their recipe!

El Tiempo Cantina's famous margaritas

Once we learned that Houston Chronicle voted El Tiempo Cantina, of trendy Washington Avenue fame, to have the “Best Margaritas”, we decided this restaurant had to be our next destination.  The competition was on!  Once we arrived and began sampling their famous margaritas, our lunch date quickly turned into an extended happy hour. Luckily, margaritas were 75¢ off.  So which restaurant had the best margaritas: Café Adobe or El Tiempo Catina?  El Tiempo had our vote.  But our quest was far from over.

Cadillac Bar at 1802 Shepherd Drive

Our next destination was Cadillac Bar to attend the restaurant’s 30th anniversary celebration.  After entering the restaurant at 1802 Shepherd Drive, we quickly joined the fiesta and were ushered to a table and given menus.  Impressed with the value of the margarita carafe compared to the cost of a 16-ounce glass, it was an offer we could not refuse.  Two carafes later and still completely sober, we were certain the margaritas were missing the key ingredient: tequila.  Two thumbs down!

Dine inside or out at trendy Cyclone Anaya's

Cyclone Anaya’s, located in the heart of Midtown at 708 Gray Street, was where we found ourselves next.  This trendy restaurant has a great ambience, friendly service, and, most importantly, fabulous margaritas!  The margaritas are a bit pricey but big enough that one is certainly enough. This is the perfect place to go for margarita-fueled fun but make sure you have a ride home! And by all means, stop at one large margarita. Trust us!

3 foot high margaritas at La Salsa, Las Vegas -worth the trip

Our quest for the best margarita suddenly took a detour west when we found ourselves almost 1,500 miles away in Las Vegas, Nevada.  While the spontaneous decision to go to Las Vegas was likely made while sharing margaritas at one of the aforementioned restaurants, it wasn’t our initial plan to taste the ‘Sin City’s’ tequila and margarita mix.  However, after a long night of, well sin, we were both craving our favorite food: Tex-Mex!  Our journey brought us to La Salsa, a popular West Coast chain that was conveniently located on the strip.  It turns out that was likely the best decision we made in our day and a half visit to Las Vegas!  Although their margaritas were a bit pricey (typical Vegas), we decided to order them anyway.  To our delight, they were served in 3’ tall souvenir glasses that we got to keep (our only method of remembering the trip!)

After a summer of fiestas, Amar and I decided that the restaurant with the best margarita is La Salsa in Las Vegas.  However, since the whole purpose of this quest was to find the best margarita in Houston, La Salsa could not count.  Therefore, we give the award to the runner-up, Cyclone Anaya’s!  Note: we have not yet had the opportunity to order margaritas from Chuy’s, Original Ninfa’s or Pappasito’s, three local Tex-Mex restaurants.  To find out if the best is being saved for last, our quest will continue next summer and won’t officially end until we have tasted every margarita in Houston, Texas!

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