As you get ready for warmer Spring weather, you may be looking for the best margarita recipe out there or wondering where one would go find the best margaritas in town. Well here in Charleston, SC, locals will tell you the best margaritas are at Mex 1 Coastal Cantina. We’re not just tooting our own horn, readers from both The Post & Courier and Charleston City Paper voted for Mex 1 as the best margarita in Charleston!

To get advice on how to make the perfect Margarita, we turn to Morgan Hurley, the Marketing and Beverage Director here at Mex 1. Morgan has won multiple mixology competitions including the Charleston Wine and Food Cocktail Competition in 2018. Mex 1 has also won the Charleston Margarita Festival two years in a row, beating over 25 other restaurants!

Over the past few years, Morgan and Mex 1 owner Dave Lorenz have traveled down to Mexico to learn more about Tequila and hand pick barrels of Tequila to bring back to Charleston and provide for their guests at Mex 1. “It has been a blast traveling down to Jalisco to step into the fields and learn the craft of making Tequila from the Master Distillers themselves,” says Morgan. “Our goal is to bring back some truly unique-to-us Tequilas so our guests can experience an authentic taste of Mexico.”

But, you won’t need to head south of the border and pick out your own barrel to make an epic margarita, you can do so from the comfort of your own home! Morgan says the most important thing about making a good margarita starts with choosing a 100% Blue Agave Tequila. “Look for 100% agave on the bottle. If it doesn’t say that, then put it right back!” he recommends.

We talked Morgan into sharing the recipe for our “El Jefe Margarita,” one of his personal favorites. El Jefe in Spanish means “the boss” and this margarita is truly the boss of them all!

Mex 1 Margarita El Jefe Margarita Recipe


  • 1.5 oz Herradura Reposado (Or the Mex 1 Double Barrel Reposado)
  • 1 oz Cointreau
  • .5 oz Lime Juice
  • .25 oz Agave Nectar

Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice, then shake vigorously for 10-15 seconds. Coat half of the rim of old fashioned glass with kosher salt and add fresh ice. Strain the cocktail into the glass and enjoy!

Preparation Time: 1 Bob Marley Song (we recommend “Satisfy My Soul”)

¿Quieren más? 
Drinking with your amigos is always better! Here’s how to make an El Jefe pitcher:


  • Herradura Reposado  – 18 ounces
  • Cointreau – 12 ounces
  • Limes – Juice of about 3-4 limes – adjust to taste
  • Agave Nectar – 3 ounces

Add all ingredients above in a pitcher. Add ice and stir for 20-30 seconds to add dilution. Taste the cocktail and adjust any ingredients as needed to achieve the perfect balance of citrus and sweet.

Preparation Time: 2 Bob Marley Songs (we suggest “Three Little Birds” and “Is This Love”)


Pro Tip: Try Swapping out the Cointreau for other fun Orange Liqueurs like Grand Marnier or Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao.

Pro Tip #2: Experiment with different citruses like lemons, oranges or blood oranges. They will each add a unique acidity and sweetness to the cocktail. And remember, a little goes a long way!

Or you can always drop into Mex 1 Coastal Cantina to try our huge selection of margaritas! Not only will we already the perfect playlist for margarita drinking blasting, you can enjoy a variety of other margaritas like Pineapple Habanero, Jalapeño Margarita, or something on the lighter side with our Skinny Margarita. Mex 1 uses only 100% agave tequila and all margaritas are made with fresh juice from a combination of lemons, limes, and oranges with the option of a variety of house-infused tequilas like pineapple, pineapple habanero, berry serrano, strawberry cucumber, and jalapeno.

But it’s not enough to just have a perfect margarita, pair it with one of their crave-able starters like their Queso or made-in-house daily guacamole. You can’t miss the famous Bangin’ Shrimp Taco with crispy shrimp, spicy Bangin’ Sauce and the Mex 1 Sweet Heat or one of their Baja Rice Bowls with all the goodies.

Come into any of our locations, West Ashley, Mt. Pleasant, or Sullivan’s Island to get the best margarita in Charleston. And if you want to learn more about the best tequilas, you can meet Morgan on March 5th at the Sustainable Tequila Beverage Workshop hosted by Charleston Wine + Food.

Baja Inspired, Charleston Born

Disclaimer: Please drink responsibly and with moderation. Tequila sold in the United States has a 40 – 55 percent alcohol content. We do not, under any circumstances, accept responsibility for any damages that result to yourself or anyone driving while drinking a margarita, wearing a sombrero and singing! Tequila! at the top of your lungs.