Believe it or not, you don’t have to be a snooty LA barista to make drinks that will astound guests and family alike; a blender is affordable, easily repaired, and plenty tech-savvy to make some of the best tasting and most beautiful summer margaritas in existence. The key is to use the right tools, paired with the right ingredients.

watermleonFor this particular recipe, you’re going to want to start with the most summery fruit of all time: watermelon. Perfectly large and ripe in July and August, watermelons are crisp, juicy, sweet and hydrating even during the hottest summer months. Why then, is this perfect summer fruit typically excluded from the cocktail cannon? What makes it so much worse than coconut, pineapple, grapefruit, and the like? The major reason is that watermelon’s high water content (a whopping 92%) tends to disrupt whatever balance and concentration of flavors that focused bartenders are working with.

That said, the reality is, cocktail makers have slept on the watermelon’s potential for a uniquely refreshing, satisfyingly textured alcoholic beverage that will please even the crankiest child. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to take a delicious fruit and turn it into a delicious alcoholic beverage; in fact, it only takes a blender.

That’s what bar consultant Jeremy Oertel released with the help of his team at Gilligan’s at SoHo Grand Hotel in New York City. Together they were able to create a frozen watermelon margarita that has shaken the entire city.

The recipe doesn’t call for any crazy ingredients; in fact, it’s not totally impossible that you already picked up the majority of them at the store for fourth of July weekend: triple sec, tequila, lime, sugar, watermelon, and ice will be enough for the best cocktail your party guests have ever tasted, so why not head to the store and load up?

“We wanted to make a drink that was going to crush it,” explained Oertel. That’s exactly what he ended up doing, as the watermelon margarita is now by far the most popular order at the bar and the restaurant now goes through dozens of watermelons a week to keep up with the high demand of their newest concoction.

“It’s super refreshing and goes down really, really easy,” he offered.

watermelon margaritaBonus points if you put a slice of watermelon on the top of the glass’s mouth and sprinkle the tip with salt, sugar and cayenne pepper for savory-sweet amuse-bouche to munch before the first sip. That extra splash of spice is a tangy and refreshing way to encourage drinkers to take life’s pleasures as they come, and to pay attention and be aware of the good days.

Ready for those ingredients and instructions again? Take 1.5 oz of tequila, 1 oz of lime juice, .5 oz of triple sec (Combier orange liqueur recommended), .5 oz of simple syrup, 5 or 6 pieces of watermelon, and a cup of ice and put them into a blender pitched. Blend till frozen and serve in a stylish glass like a mason jar, Old-Fashioned glass, or whatever the heck is handy. Crazy straws and umbrellas are optional, but they certainly can’t help when it comes to celebrating American independence.