Things to Do

Austin Margarita Festival Blends Cool Tunes and Frosty Drinks

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Tony Maples Photography


Since fall in Texas can oftentimes feel an awful lot like July in Texas, what better way to cool off than with an ice-cold Margarita? Celebrate the sweet and sour libation at the Austin Margarita Festival, held on October 28. With Austin’s reputation for being the Live Music Capital of the World, there’s only one thing that might add to that status – margaritas!

“Keep the Margaritas Flowin’ and the Good Times Goin’”

Austin Margarita Festival

Photo: Facebook/Austin Margarita Festival

This year, the Austin Margarita Festival will grace the downtown area, just across the Congress Avenue Bridge, on the Austin American-Statesman’s riverside property.  The over-21, one-day event is a reflection of Austin’s plethora of eclectic styles and artistry, only this diversity shows through in the more than 20 Margarita Flavors, including the Bourbon St. Hurricane, Grapefruit Groupie, and Jalapeno Pepper. Served frozen or on the rocks, the endless choice of mouthwatering Margaritas can be enjoyed against the backdrop of Austin’s beautiful skyline. Adding to the cool vibe of this Margarita mecca, you can sip to the sounds of live bands and DJs, and to the complement of great food!  You’ve heard the tagline, “Keep Austin Weird.” Well, Austinites, on October 28, 2017, you’ll hear a new adage: “Keep the margaritas flowin’ and the good times goin’!”

Origins of the Margarita


Photo: Flickr/Lee Coursey

There are almost as many stories about the origin of the Margarita as there will be flavors of the concoction at the Austin Margarita Festival. One of the earliest stories is the Margarita being invented in 1938 by Carlos “Danny” Herrera at his restaurant Rancho La Gloria, halfway between Tijuana and Rosarito, Mexico., Legend has it that it was created for customer and former Ziegfeld dancer Marjorie King, who was allergic to many spirits, but not to tequila.

Others say the inventor was Dallas socialite Margarita Sames, when she concocted the drink for her guests at her Acapulco vacation home in 1948. Tommy Hilton reportedly attended, bringing the drink back to the Hilton chain of hotels. However, Jose Cuervo was already running ad campaigns for the Margarita three years earlier, in 1945, with the slogan, “Margarita: It’s more than a girl’s name.” According to Jose Cuervo, the cocktail was invented in 1938 by a bartender in honor of Mexican showgirl Rita de la Rosa.

Another common origin tale (that has roots in Texas) begins the cocktail’s history at the legendary Balinese Room in Galveston where, in 1948, head bartender Santos Cruz created the Margarita for singer Peggy (Margaret) Lee. He supposedly named it after the Spanish version of her name, Margarita, and it has been a hit ever since.

Austin Margarita Festival 

Austin Margarita Festival

Photo: Flickr/Stacie

No matter the true origins of this popular cocktail, one thing’s for certain: There will be no shortage of the stuff at the Austin Margarita Festival. To learn more about the event, visit their website or Facebook page.