Happy National Tequila Day! Then again, who really needs a reason to drink the good stuff? We sort through what's out there to locate places that might not be on your radar until now. Save a seat for us, okay?
Chupacabra at Three Seventy Common
We begin our quest at the beach. This savage sip begins with ghost chili pepper-infused Lunazul tequila. It's hit with an acidic duo of lemon and lime. Cucumber puree cools it down. A little agave for your sweet tooth and bit of cilantro and you're ready for action. Now add a buddy's name on the chalkboard by buying them a future Chupacabra. 370 Glenneyre St, Laguna Beach, (949) 494-8686; www.370common.com.
El Palomar Margarita at Cha Cha's Latin Cantina
Next up, the second branch of this OC brand can be found newly open off Jamboree in the Market Place. With a spacious, wrap-around bar, their contribution to this drinking holiday is referred to as El Palomar. This one-day-only special is all about the AsomBroso Blanco. A hibiscus tea float makes it special. Fresh Serrano gets it spicy. We'll have two! 13126 Jamboree Rd, Irvine, (714) 408-7819 and 110 W Birch St, Brea, (714) 255-1040; www.chaschaslatinkitchen.com.
What's Up Doc? at Pacific Hideaway
Accompanying their daily brunch, this cocktail's ingredient list sounded more like a juice cleanse than a refreshing beverage. Reposado doesn't seem to mind the company, though. Joined by five different juices (see photo), What's Up Doc maintains its deliciousness. Cheers! 500 Pacific Coast Hwy, Huntington Beach, (714) 965-4448; www.pacifichideawayhb.com.
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Sandia Fresca at Oak Grill
Newport provides the backdrop for our fourth stop, where Don Julio Blanco is our host. Agave and lime are no stranger to this party, but Monin H2O Melon and a half dozen chunks of watermelon get into the mix. A few shakes later, and Sandia Fresca is served. 690 Newport Center Dr, Newport Beach (949) 760-4920; www.oakgrillnb.com.
Do You Even Juice Bro? at Eureka!
To go along with their brand new weekend brunch offerings, these burger specialists reminded us there's more to them than a beer selection. We aren't quite sold on Eureka's choice of drink names, but at least they're memorable. Their blend of no-name tequila, tomato, tomatillo, cucumber and horseradish sounds a bit hair of the dog— so consume with caution. 7631 Edinger Ave, Huntington Beach, (714) 230-3955 and 4143 Campus Dr, Irvine, (949) 596-8881; www.eurekarestaurantgroup.com.