The Culture of Food and Drink

Home / Recipe  / Cocktails  / Cocktail Hour: Reinventing The Strawberry Margarita

Cocktail Hour: Reinventing The Strawberry Margarita

Road to Rosarita cocktail. Credit: Prospect restaurant

Road to Rosarita cocktail. Credit: Prospect restaurant

Everybody loves strawberries, to eat or even to drink. And their appeal in cocktails goes beyond the ever-popular strawberry margarita.

“Strawberries lend themselves to a wide variety of people,” says Davin Affrunti, bar director of Prospect restaurant in San Francisco. “And they can be used with any spirit, especially for brunch, they’re so refreshing.”

Prospect sources strawberries from Dirty Girl Farms, a 40-acre, certified organic farm near the town of Santa Cruz, for several of its dishes. In fact, it was the restaurant’s chef who reached out to see if Affrunti might like some too.

Affrunti experiments with other seasonal ingredients and spirits to come up with strawberry-based cocktails.

“With a strawberry margarita, drinkers may have only one thing on their mind, but we want to balance the sweetness out a little by using simple syrup instead of triple sec, and giving it a bit of spice.”

The Road to Rosarito is the result: a crisp, clean, approachable drink that packs just the slightest punch, thanks to the spice adorning the rim.

Road to Rosarito

Courtesy Davin Affrunti, Prospect, San Francisco

Serves 1


For the garnish:

Ground dehydrated strawberries

Kosher salt


Tajín chili (a seasoning from Mexico comprised traditionally of Mexican chilies, salt and lime)

For the cocktail:

2 ounces 100% agave silver (blanco) tequila

½ ounce simple syrup

1 ounce fresh strawberry juice (preferably from Dirty Girl strawberries)

1 fresh strawberry


1. Blend equal parts crushed and ground dehydrated strawberry, salt, sugar and Tajín chili. Wet the rim of a rock or old-fashioned glass and dip into the chili-salt-strawberry mix.

2. Shake and double-strain the tequila, simple syrup and strawberry juice into the glass.

3. Add a strawberry for garnish on the rim.

Top photo: Road to Rosarito cocktail. Credit: Courtesy of Prospect restaurant

Zester Daily contributor Virginie Boone is a Sonoma Valley-based wine writer. She has reported on the Northern California wine scene for the Santa Rosa Press Democrat and its affiliate food and wine magazine, Savor, and is a contributing reviewer of California wines for Wine Enthusiast.