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2015 Rum Howler Margarita Challenge

Alfred Cointreau Margarita SAM_1517s

Alfred Cointreau Margarita

During the months of March and April, my Rum Chums and I embarked on a Tequila Odyssey, as we sampled and tasted a series of blanco spirits in an attempt to determine the best Tequila to feature this summer when sipping Margarita Cocktails. Prior to this engagement, I contacted several of my industry sources letting them know about my plans for the Margarita Challenge which I would publish as a series of reviews during the month of May. I was of course provided with samples from some of these sources and after combining those samples with the bottles of tequila which I already owned, I felt I had enough agave spirit to make for a worthwhile competition. Hence my plans for the 2015 Rum Howler Margarita Challenge came to fruition.

During my initial deliberations regarding the Margarita Challenge, the folks at Select Wines stepped up and arranged for me to receive a bottle of Cointreau singed by Alfred Cointreau himself, and asked me if I would consider using their spirit as the orange liqueur of choice for the cocktail challenge. I thought using the special bottle of Cointreau was a splendid idea, and in honour of Mr. Cointreau (for supplying and signing my bottle) I have dubbed my version of the quintessential Tequila cocktail used for the challenge, the Alfred Cointreau Margarita.

(You can find the recipe here.)

In order to fairly judge each spirit, I had my four of my Rum Chums meet on a series of Sundays where we tasted a flight of Margarita Cocktails (four or five each time) side by side in a blind format and gave each cocktail a score out of 25. Each cocktail was prepared identically, and at the conclusion of the competition I had my judges gathered one additional time to taste the final flight of Margaritas which contained (unbeknownst to them) the spirit which had won each of the previous tasting flights. Using the scores from the final flight I was able to adjust the scores of each previous flight to account for scoring variations which may have occurred between tasting sessions.

I asked each judge to score their Margaritas based upon two major factors, the first of course being how delicious they felt the cocktails were, and the second factor being how well they felt the tequila shined in each particular cocktail. As each judge gave the spirit a score out of 25, it was a simple matter to add the scores and give each spirit an overall score out of 100. I have chosen to publish the scores of the top ten blanco spirits. These will be revealed (countdown style) during the month of May beginning with the number 10 spirit.

The results will begin to be revealed on May 05, 2015:


1)   Roca Patron Silver   (Margarita Score 95 pts)
2)  Tromba Tequila (Blanco)   (Margarita Score 92.5 pts)
3)  Dulce Vida Organic (Blanco) Tequila   (Margarita Score 92 pts)
4)  Patrón Silver Tequila                (Margarita Score 90 pts)
5)  Don Julio (Blanco)                     (Margarita Score 88.5 pts)
6)  Casamigos Tequila (Blanco)   (Margarita Score 86 pts)
7)  Jose Cuervo Especial Plata (Silver)    (Margarita Score 84 pts)
8)  Avion Silver Tequila                   (Margarita Score 83 pts)
9)   Cruz Del Sol (Silver)                 (Margarita Score 81.5 pts)
10) Hornitos Plata Tequila            (Margarita Score 78 pts)


Note: Scores are calculated out of a possibility of 100 points and you can interpret those scores  as follows:

01 – 25   A Cocktail with a rating this low would actually kill you.
26 – 49   A rating here means that you feel ill, but you will recover in time.
50 – 59   You are safe to drink this; but you shouldn’t.
60 – 69   A substandard cocktail which you may offer to people you do not want to see again.
70 – 79   Now we have a decent cocktail. You may begin to serve this to friends.
80 – 85   This cocktail is a cocktail of the same quality we would expect to find in fine restaurants and bars.
86 – 89   This cocktail borders upon greatness.
90 – 94   Paradigms shift and your cocktail world is rocked!
95 – 99    Sublime Nectar of the Gods!

As each score is published, I shall place it on the list above. As I publish the list, I shall also provide new up-to-date reviews for each spirit. To read the new review simple click on the ranked spirit which is linked to the latest review. Only when all of the featured Tequila spirits have been revealed (one at a time) will I declare which blanco agave spirit I feel is the Rum Howler 2015, Best Blanco Tequila for Margarita Cocktails!



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