My wife likes frozen margaritas. So do I. In our never-ending quest to find the perfect homemade concoction, we've tried blender after blender, ice crusher after ice crusher, and mix after mix. The result?
So, being tech-minded and experimental, I decided to try to make the best margarita we could using the power of gadgets. Here's how we got our drink on in the geekiest way possible.
First, we did plenty of research. We found this DIY drink-making robot, but assembly looked far too difficult for a lazy Saturday afternoon and it wasn't easy on the eyes. Luckily, someone thought ahead and made a real drink-mixing machine, Margaritaville Mixed Drink Maker. It works like this: you dump orange juice, cranberry, and sour mix into one of four containers. Then you pour in a bottle of booze - vodka, tequila, or rum - and tell the system what you're tippling.
An on-screen display then shows you all the drinks you can make - up to 48 in all, depending on the booze you choose. A "feeling lucky" button brings up a random drink and there is a "strong" button for adding a bit more booze.
The system costs $300 online and seems like it would be amazing. After all, who wouldn't want a robot to make them a screwdriver? But the drinks available were fairly limited - a permutation of the old booze and juice mix that anyone with a college experience at a frat party could recreate. Sadly, the margaritas were sub par at best and the machine looks and sounds cooler than it is. If you're running a guest house full of hard core drinkers, this might be a good alternative to letting them all dig through your liquor cabinet, but not by much.
Worst of all, it couldn't make frozen drinks without the extra step of slushing up the resulting concoction, so we were stuck drinking a full bottle of room-temperature juice and tequila. A terrible fate, to be sure.
Realizing we wouldn't be able to be make the ultimate margarita via robot, we went the old-fashioned route - with a blender. Luckily, we had the chance to test out a real best-of-breed machine, the Omega BL630, a real monster. This thing has multiple speeds and can reduce a container of ice, booze, and mix into a frosty, slushy margarita in a few seconds. The entire thing is computer-controlled so you can set a timer for 30 or so seconds while you Super Soak the kids or flip some burgers.
Now for the bad news: this monster is $549, although Omega makes cheaper models. Compared to our $70 retro-styled beehive Oster, however, it's like running a tank to take down some shrubs. Overkill, but good overkill.
Which mix did we use? We ran through a few different ones but Tommy's mix was our favorite. While we couldn't completely automate the margarita process, we were able to make it a bit more fun. And somehow, it just got funner the more we drank. Go figure!
Do you have a favorite gadget for making frozen drinks?
Images via Margaritaville, Omega