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Margaritas from Barracuda
Randy Schmidt/Barracuda

Where to Sip the Best Margaritas in New Orleans

17 spots for the times no other drink will do

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Margaritas from Barracuda
| Randy Schmidt/Barracuda

The perfect margarita — good tequila, fresh lime juice, simple syrup, orange liqueur, salt on the rim, and on the rocks please — is a bracing punctuation mark in the cocktail lexicon. Tart, refreshing, potent, the margarita is the absolute perfect foil for zesty Mexican fare or steamy New Orleans weather when it’s made with fresh ingredients and presented with flair.

Here are some of Eater’s favorite margaritas, for those times no other drink will do. Did we miss your favorite margarita in New Orleans? Leave a comment or send an email.

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Note: This map is arranged by geography, never by ranking or date of inclusion on the map.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Taqueria Corona

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In addition to offering a lively, kid-friendly atmosphere and some of the best Mexican food in town, this decades-old Magazine Street taqueria serves a solid margarita, with tons of options for tequila — regular, large, or by the pitcher.

The Backyard

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This is a great place to let the kids run wild in the restaurant’s backyard while enjoying the Daisy Mae, the house marg with Sauza, Grand Marnier, and Cointreau. In addition to being kid-friendly, the Backyard is dog-friendly, with an outdoor space that radiates a summery, Sunday afternoon kind of vibe, complete with picnic tables and playground equipment.

Sarita's Grill

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This friendly Freret Street Cuban/Mexican/Central American hole-in-the-wall’s ceiling is strewn with the white lights of a university dorm room and the walls are decorated with an intriguing assortment of wall art (from waterfalls to a pelican playing the maracas). Sarita’s serves margaritas on tap, poured by the glass or pitcher in sweet (original, mango, or strawberry) or savory (hints of jalapeno and cilantro). Be sure to get some queso and chips to accompany the margs.

El Pavo Real

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This tiny joint in Broadmoor was BYO when it first opened, but now uses its fantastic agua fresca game to liven up its margarita selection. The selection changes seasonally but if they’ve got watermelon, definitely check it out. This place doesn’t really have a bar, but the only thing better than their margaritas here is their food, especially their traditional Mexican breakfast items (available all day) so sit down and tuck in.

Watermelon margarita at El Pavo Real
El Pavo Real/Facebook

Del Fuego Taqueria

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The chill Magazine Street taco house doesn’t take short cuts. All of the margaritas are made with fresh squeezed juice, as nature intended. On tap at the bar, Del Fuego’s margaritas are beyond potent. Slurp outside overlooking the streetscape or in the cozy back patio.

The Velvet Cactus

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This Lakeview Mexican joint offers a margarita menu that changes with the seasons, featuring the likes of watermelon and mint; blood orange and mango; and coconut, mango, and habanero. Sip out on the lively patio, and feel good that these thirst quenchers are made with freshly squeezed lime juice and cane sugar.

Blood orange mango margarita at Velvet Cactus
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Felipe's Mexican Taqueria — Multiple Locations

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With locations in the FQ, Uptown, and Mid City, fast-casual Felipe’s is a convenient spot for fresh or frozen margaritas made with lime juice freshly squeezed by the bartenders. Although always reasonable, Wednesdays are a steal, with margaritas just $5. Step out of the usual and try a blueberry thyme margarita, made with local blueberries.

Barracuda

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Barracuda, the taco stand and margarita garden on Tchoup, makes kickin’ agua fresca, margaritas, palomas, and more — some of which are available by the jug for takeout. For single servings in the restaurant’s backyard, there are classic, mezcal, and spicy margaritas, as well as a rotating special — past flavors have included such delights as hibiscus honeysuckle and cucumber melon. There’s now a location on the West Bank, too, opened in summer 2021.

Superior Grill

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This colorful and sprawling St. Charles Avenue stalwart with plenty of outdoor seating consistently earns raves for its margaritas made with a variety of tequilas and fresh citrus juices. Calorie counters can ask for the skinny margarita, better make it a double. Note: Even if you’re sitting at a table, the restaurant tends to serve the margaritas in Styrofoam cups, especially during happy hour.

Blue Oak BBQ

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Everyone knows this laid-back Mid City smokehouse has some of the best barbecue in town, but did you know they also have one of the best house margaritas? Perfectly balanced, not too sweet, and definitely on the stronger side. They’re only $5 during happy hour, and pair perfectly with other great specials like sliders, mini nachos, and smoked wings.

Santa Fe

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Leafy Esplanade Avenue is the perfect backdrop for Santa Fe, a Southwestern eatery with a penchant for darn good margaritas made with fresh lime juice. They make for ideal slurping along with chips and salsa.

Casa Borrega

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Casa Borrega pioneered the restaurant scene in Central City along Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, and it’s still a frontrunner for cocktails, cuisine, and live music. The margarita menu includes the Margarita Borrega made with Cimarrón Blanco, Gran Gala, fresh squeezed lime, and dark agave nectar. The standard house version is a solid choice, as is the Cadillac version made with blood orange liqueur.lce

Juan's Flying Burrito (Multiple Locations)

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From classic to supersized to fruity to frozen, if you’re not getting your margarita on while dining here, you ain’t doing it right. Try the cooling cucumber, frozen lemon berry, or treat yo’self to a Cadillac. Better yet, make your margarita a “Bootlegger” by adding a shot of moonshine to it, or add a shot of sangria for a “Sandroni.”

Johnny Sánchez

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This elevated taco hotspot in the CBD has an entire cocktail menu built around Mexican flavors, so finding the traditional Margarita de la Casa alongside a grapefruit-blue curacao version is no surprise. Tequila purists, be sure to check out the impressive tequila and mezcals, since there are about 50 to choose from.

El Gato Negro (Multiple Locations)

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El Gato Negro, with locations in the French Quarter, Lakeview, and now Gretna, takes its tequila seriously. Not only does the bar pour flights of blancos, añejos, and reposados, the “Black Cat” serves traditional margaritas alongside the likes of pineapple-cilantro and the 48-ounce “machoman” margarita made with Tacomba Azul and Grand Marnier.

Port of Call

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Although this Port of Call is best known for its potent Monsoon cocktails (the bar’s version of a hurricane), the margaritas deserve a shout-out. Generously poured and strong, they are made with a fine sour mix brightened with a squeeze of lime. Order one the next time you are mingling with the tourists waiting outside for a table at this popular burger dive.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Galaxie

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There’s always a version of a frozen margarita along with a weekly frigid special at Galaxie Tacos, the St. Claude Avenue taco joint in a former gas station setting. Order from a wide array of tequilas and Mezcal incorporated into margaritas and margarita-adjacent beverages, for takeout or on the huge front outdoor dining space. Keep an eye out for the always-interesting specials, for drink and food.

Taqueria Corona

In addition to offering a lively, kid-friendly atmosphere and some of the best Mexican food in town, this decades-old Magazine Street taqueria serves a solid margarita, with tons of options for tequila — regular, large, or by the pitcher.

The Backyard

This is a great place to let the kids run wild in the restaurant’s backyard while enjoying the Daisy Mae, the house marg with Sauza, Grand Marnier, and Cointreau. In addition to being kid-friendly, the Backyard is dog-friendly, with an outdoor space that radiates a summery, Sunday afternoon kind of vibe, complete with picnic tables and playground equipment.

Sarita's Grill

This friendly Freret Street Cuban/Mexican/Central American hole-in-the-wall’s ceiling is strewn with the white lights of a university dorm room and the walls are decorated with an intriguing assortment of wall art (from waterfalls to a pelican playing the maracas). Sarita’s serves margaritas on tap, poured by the glass or pitcher in sweet (original, mango, or strawberry) or savory (hints of jalapeno and cilantro). Be sure to get some queso and chips to accompany the margs.

El Pavo Real

Watermelon margarita at El Pavo Real
El Pavo Real/Facebook

This tiny joint in Broadmoor was BYO when it first opened, but now uses its fantastic agua fresca game to liven up its margarita selection. The selection changes seasonally but if they’ve got watermelon, definitely check it out. This place doesn’t really have a bar, but the only thing better than their margaritas here is their food, especially their traditional Mexican breakfast items (available all day) so sit down and tuck in.

Watermelon margarita at El Pavo Real
El Pavo Real/Facebook

Del Fuego Taqueria

The chill Magazine Street taco house doesn’t take short cuts. All of the margaritas are made with fresh squeezed juice, as nature intended. On tap at the bar, Del Fuego’s margaritas are beyond potent. Slurp outside overlooking the streetscape or in the cozy back patio.

The Velvet Cactus

Blood orange mango margarita at Velvet Cactus
Facebook

This Lakeview Mexican joint offers a margarita menu that changes with the seasons, featuring the likes of watermelon and mint; blood orange and mango; and coconut, mango, and habanero. Sip out on the lively patio, and feel good that these thirst quenchers are made with freshly squeezed lime juice and cane sugar.

Blood orange mango margarita at Velvet Cactus
Facebook

Felipe's Mexican Taqueria — Multiple Locations

With locations in the FQ, Uptown, and Mid City, fast-casual Felipe’s is a convenient spot for fresh or frozen margaritas made with lime juice freshly squeezed by the bartenders. Although always reasonable, Wednesdays are a steal, with margaritas just $5. Step out of the usual and try a blueberry thyme margarita, made with local blueberries.

Barracuda

Barracuda, the taco stand and margarita garden on Tchoup, makes kickin’ agua fresca, margaritas, palomas, and more — some of which are available by the jug for takeout. For single servings in the restaurant’s backyard, there are classic, mezcal, and spicy margaritas, as well as a rotating special — past flavors have included such delights as hibiscus honeysuckle and cucumber melon. There’s now a location on the West Bank, too, opened in summer 2021.

Superior Grill

This colorful and sprawling St. Charles Avenue stalwart with plenty of outdoor seating consistently earns raves for its margaritas made with a variety of tequilas and fresh citrus juices. Calorie counters can ask for the skinny margarita, better make it a double. Note: Even if you’re sitting at a table, the restaurant tends to serve the margaritas in Styrofoam cups, especially during happy hour.

Blue Oak BBQ

Everyone knows this laid-back Mid City smokehouse has some of the best barbecue in town, but did you know they also have one of the best house margaritas? Perfectly balanced, not too sweet, and definitely on the stronger side. They’re only $5 during happy hour, and pair perfectly with other great specials like sliders, mini nachos, and smoked wings.

Santa Fe

Leafy Esplanade Avenue is the perfect backdrop for Santa Fe, a Southwestern eatery with a penchant for darn good margaritas made with fresh lime juice. They make for ideal slurping along with chips and salsa.

Casa Borrega

Casa Borrega pioneered the restaurant scene in Central City along Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, and it’s still a frontrunner for cocktails, cuisine, and live music. The margarita menu includes the Margarita Borrega made with Cimarrón Blanco, Gran Gala, fresh squeezed lime, and dark agave nectar. The standard house version is a solid choice, as is the Cadillac version made with blood orange liqueur.lce

Juan's Flying Burrito (Multiple Locations)

From classic to supersized to fruity to frozen, if you’re not getting your margarita on while dining here, you ain’t doing it right. Try the cooling cucumber, frozen lemon berry, or treat yo’self to a Cadillac. Better yet, make your margarita a “Bootlegger” by adding a shot of moonshine to it, or add a shot of sangria for a “Sandroni.”

Johnny Sánchez

This elevated taco hotspot in the CBD has an entire cocktail menu built around Mexican flavors, so finding the traditional Margarita de la Casa alongside a grapefruit-blue curacao version is no surprise. Tequila purists, be sure to check out the impressive tequila and mezcals, since there are about 50 to choose from.

El Gato Negro (Multiple Locations)

El Gato Negro, with locations in the French Quarter, Lakeview, and now Gretna, takes its tequila seriously. Not only does the bar pour flights of blancos, añejos, and reposados, the “Black Cat” serves traditional margaritas alongside the likes of pineapple-cilantro and the 48-ounce “machoman” margarita made with Tacomba Azul and Grand Marnier.

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Port of Call

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Although this Port of Call is best known for its potent Monsoon cocktails (the bar’s version of a hurricane), the margaritas deserve a shout-out. Generously poured and strong, they are made with a fine sour mix brightened with a squeeze of lime. Order one the next time you are mingling with the tourists waiting outside for a table at this popular burger dive.

Josh Brasted/Eater NOLA

Galaxie

There’s always a version of a frozen margarita along with a weekly frigid special at Galaxie Tacos, the St. Claude Avenue taco joint in a former gas station setting. Order from a wide array of tequilas and Mezcal incorporated into margaritas and margarita-adjacent beverages, for takeout or on t