The Best Margaritas in Toronto
The best margaritas in Toronto are a signature drink of summer, particularly for lovers of tequila. The margaritas itself is also one of the more customizable cocktails. You can add a wide variety of fruit juices or nectars (or the fruits themselves), and bastardized versions benefit from the inclusion of other liqueurs.
What makes the best margarita is clearly not only in the glass of the beholder, but rather in the bar at large, the food on offer (spoiler alert: typically Mexican), and the dent in your wallet after you've had your fill. The latter, in particular, should not make you shy away from at least giving some of the top-of-the-line drinks mentioned below a good college try.
Here are the best margaritas in Toronto.
Reposado is arguably (but not a very long argument) Toronto's finest tequila bar. It comes as no surprise then that their margarita menu is concise and to-the-point. A lime margarita will cost you $10, while flavours such as blood orange or mango will add a very reasonable surplus of $.50. Paired with their tapas menu, the occasional set of live jazz, and the elegant atmosphere, there's a clear reason for their top spot on the list. More »
Grand Electric is praised mainly (and thoroughly) for its tacos, and less frequently for their wide selection of bourbon. Perhaps it's because they only have one margarita. An $8, 1.5 oz blend of ghetto tequila, agave syrup, lime and sugar salt rim. No muss, no fuss, but as with everything else, you'll have to endure the line-ups to get into this Parkdale hot spot. More »
Playa Cabana is a relatively small spot, located in a converted townhouse on Dupont, that offers authentic Mexican eats, a new back patio, and they make a quality margarita (with three varieties available in pitcher form). Their house margarita, Amber Agave, melds El Jimador reposado, raw agave nectar, and a spritz of fresh lime ($8 for a glass, or $39 for a pitcher). The boss of the bunch is the Platinum, made with Gran Patron Platinum (a limited edition tequila) which rings in at $42. More »
At Milagro the margaritas come in two sizes (always choose the larger). From the standard lime to fruit flavours such as strawberry, mango, and coconut, to a margarita with beer (huzzah!), most of these are available as a small for $8.95 and a large for $14.50 (2.5 oz). Their priciest offering is a heady blend of Don Julio Blanco and Grand Marnier. Go on, let yourself be lured by their witty, sometimes nonsensical sandwich boards, and best of all, there are 3 locations in Toronto, so you can get your fix in whichever sector of the city you might find yourself. More »
La Carnita is the new, wildly popular restaurant of the former, wildly popular pop-up kings. The chic interior nods to their penchant for street art, and the concise, focused menu that showcases takes on previous fan favourites (such as the Voltron fish and chorizo tacos) and simple, Mexican desserts, is dwarfed by their drink list. Only one margarita graces it, but it features new kid on the tequila block, Tromba, as well as a touch of Cointreau, lime juice, and agave nectar ($11). More »
No One Writes to the Colonel might not be the most intuitive choice, but their margaritas come with real, freshly-crushed fruit (so call ahead if a particular flavour is make or break for you, as they may not carry it daily) such as peach, strawberry, pineapple, papaya and lime. Across the board, it's an even, wallet-friendly $8, and the space caters beautifully to quirky intellectuals, university students, and their various hangers-on. More »
This Kensington go-to for Mexican food features bright, borderline kitschy inside decor, a long, decent menu of fajitas, tacos, and quesadillas (as well as fresh and tangy pico de gallo served with chips). But for our purposes, their margarita is authentic, and more importantly, affordable. For just $6.25, you can enjoy the solid, tasty drink on their sun-speckled patio. More »
Ruby Watchco is the brainchild of Chef Lynn Crawford (of Iron Chef and Restaurant Makeover fame), and the food is much as you'd expect in terms of quality. Featuring a daily prix fixe menu, which tends to include a cheese plate course (important to note for those among us who are lactose intolerant), the cocktail menu is noteworthy in and of itself. The current, summer season margarita blends Tromba tequila and elderflower liqueur with a salty rim, all for $14. Not too shabby. More »
Universal Grill offers a more elevated menu that you'd expect from their nostalgic, diner digs, but their dinner menu includes salt cod cakes, panseared calves liver, and AAA flat iron steak. Their margaritas follow suit, with a blend of tequila and triple sec coming together for just $9.75 (for a double). Best of all, stop in on a Friday, and enjoy margaritas for the special price of $6. More »
Its name evokes images of zoot-suit-sporting Mexican mobsters of yore, and the menu, with its focus on locally-sourced fish, affordable prices, and innovative dishes, instantly makes my mouth water. Fortunately, this same creativity extends to their drink menu, with a wide menu of margarita flavours available, from strawberry and mint, to blackberry, to spicy mango ($8 each). Can't choose from this fruity array? Consider their tasting option, which pairs three different margarita flavours for $15. More »
This small Mexican spot in the Bathurst and Dupont area, offers classics of the cuisine such as pozole, burritos, and enchiladas, and features a patio on which you can, and should, enjoy from their menu of special margaritas (each $11 for 4oz). You'll find expected fruit flavours such as raspberry or strawberry, but also the amaretto margarita (Cueva, Vleja tequila, amaretto and fresh lime juice), and the sangria margarita, which is exactly as it sounds, and marries tequila, wine, fruits and triple sec. More »
Kitch is a newer entry, and located it an interesting area of town. Neighboured by The Brick, and a set of train tracks that will easily drown out conversations every so often on their patio, it offers Mexican fare with an eclectic, modernized twist. But they know their audience, and come to the table with a full margarita bar, ready to customize a margarita with mango, guava, pear, peach, passion fruit or tropical fruit nectars. They'll even toss in some real fruit if there's room in the glass (and based on availabilty). It's $7.50 for a standard, $9.99 for 2 oz, and $19.99 for a 2-person, 4 oz fishbowl. As a warning to you lushes out there, you must, in fact, be ordering for 2 people; regulations and all that nonsense. More »