Tommy's Margarita Recipe

By Timo Torner / Last updated on May 7, 2023

The Tommy's Margarita is a variation of the traditional Mexican Margarita recipe. The cocktail recipe is a modern classic recognized by the IBA as a New Era Drink.
Tommy's Margarita cocktail on wooden table

The Tommy's Margarita follows a slightly different approach than the original and calls for only three ingredients: Tequila, lime, and syrup. 

Omitting the orange liqueur first sparked a debate about whether or not the drink deserves the name Margarita. Yet, as soon as the IBA recognized and classified it as a New Era Drink, discussions calmed down. 

Quick Facts Tommy's Margarita

  • Method: shaken
  • Flavor profile: sour, dry
  • How to serve it: over ice
  • Best glassware: rocks glass
  • Alcohol content: ~ 20% ABV, 19.5 grams of alcohol per serving

Read who invented this simplified version of the classic Mexican drink, and learn how to make it at home and to perfection. 

Tommy's Margarita cocktail on wooden table

Tommy's Margarita Recipe

A simplified version of the classic Margarita recipe using only three ingredients.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: agave, Tequila
Servings: 1
Calories: 198kcal
Cost: $2.50


  • 1 Jigger
  • 1 Cocktail Shaker
  • 1 Hawthorne Strainer


  • 2 oz Reposado Tequila
  • 1 oz Freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 0.5 oz Agave nectar


  • Salt rim a chilled glass and set it aside.
  • Add all ingredients into your cocktail shaker with plenty of ice.
    2 oz Reposado Tequila, 1 oz Freshly squeezed lime juice, 0.5 oz Agave nectar
  • Shake until the drink is well chilled and strain over ice into your cocktail glass.


Serving: 3.75ozCalories: 198kcalCarbohydrates: 5.2gSodium: 0.65mgPotassium: 13mgSugar: 5gVitamin C: 13.5mgCalcium: 1.8mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Ingredients for Tommy's Margarita

Pretty similar to the original, it's about the details when making this tequila cocktail:

  • Agave Syrup: this version is made with agave syrup instead of regular simple syrup. The original recipe uses syrup made of Blue Weber Agave only. That's the same type used for making tequila and further enhances the spirit's taste.
  • Tequila: the key ingredient for every Margarita, also in a Tommy's. Usually, a silver type of tequila, also called Plata, is used. Although, I prefer a slightly aged Reposado in this case. Either way, make sure it's 100% agave.
  • Lime juice is an essential component. As opposed to the classic Marg, I prefer aged lime juice for this version. 
  • Salt for the rim: preferably fleur de sel or sea salt

How to Make it - Best Practices

A Tommy's Margarita has a much more pronounced agave taste than the citrus-forward original version. That also means using fresh lime juice is even more important here. 

We like to age our lime juice, which means, we squeeze it 2 to 3 hours before mixing the drinks. This aging time reduces the bitter notes and smoothens the sour bite while maintaining the natural, fresh zesty taste.

Shake this drink for at least 15 seconds, and make sure to use plenty of ice for the process. The tequila has center stage, and you want your drink ice cold. - Also, be generous with the ice when serving Tommy's Margarita.

Tommy's Margarita with salt rim - top view

History of Tommy's Margarita

Although the name suggests that the drink got invented by a "Tommy", it was, in fact, not. The inventor of the cocktail is Julio Bermejo. He created the simplified version of a Margarita in the 1990s while working at his parent's restaurant Tommy's

The restaurant is located in San Francisco and is famous for its enormous selection of agave spirits. So if you happen to be in the area and are into tequila or mezcal, this place is an absolute must.

When Julio Bermejo discovered agave nectar, he was intrigued as the ingredient was not very common in those days. He experimented a bit and came up with a Margarita recipe that solely works with the sweetness of agave nectar. No additional sugar, no orange liqueur.

Agave syrup was way more expensive than combining syrup and orange liqueur, but Bermejo just loved the result.

More Margarita Variations

You are up for more variations of the Mexican favorite? Grab your shaker and mix up some of these creative takes on the Margarita:

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