Grape juice is a tasty, electrolyte-fueled drink. And grape jelly is the ideal sandwich companion to peanut butter. But this isn’t about childhood snacks. This is about cocktails. Because Concord grapes are perfect for mixed drinks, thanks to their sweetness and pleasantly dry finish.
New York bartender Noah Small harnesses the little fruit’s power in the Concord Grape Margarita. He merges Concord grape juice and jelly with Cimarron blanco tequila, a spirit full of roasted highland agave notes, dry earth and pepper. It provides a sturdy foil to the sweet, musky grape, while lemon juice lends the acidity that keeps this drink planted in Margarita territory.
The cocktail is served in a glass rimmed with smoked salt, which adds a savory dimension to each sip, and the vibrant color can’t be beat. Once you taste this drink, you may never look at Concord grapes the same way. But you will likely stock your kitchen with grape juice and jelly, so you’re always ready when a craving strikes—whether it’s for sandwiches or cocktails.
Smoked salt, to rim
1 1/2 ounces Cimarron blanco tequila
1 ounce R.W. Knudsen organic Concord grape juice
3/4 ounce lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 teaspoon Smuckers Concord grape jelly
Wet the rim of a rocks glass with lemon juice, dip the rim in smoked salt, and set aside.
Add the tequila, grape juice, lemon juice and grape jelly to a shaker filled with ice, and shake until well-chilled.
Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice.
Classic Margarita: Keeps it traditional with blanco tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice and agave nectar
Blood Orange Margarita: Updates the classic with Campari and blood orange juice
Watermelon Margarita: Adds refreshing mint and hydrating watermelon to the mix
Strawberry Basil Margarita: Leans fruity with fresh strawberries and maraschino liqueur
Pineapple Jalapeño Margarita: Embraces sweet heat with muddled pineapple and jalapeño slices