‘Gate Plate: Cucumber Jalapeño Margarita 

Isabella Giammalva, Contributing Writer

Hamilton, N.Y. is a small town with few options for grabbing dinner with friends or getting a good drink. Although Martha’s on Madison is an excellent option for a quality cocktail, gathering your friends to go out can be challenging. As a senior who is finally 21, I decided to take matters into my own hands. The cocktail shaker was calling my name, and my friends and I needed to desperately amp up our drink game. Let me introduce you to the cucumber jalapeño margarita, an elevated and somewhat sophisticated cocktail. I want to start by saying this is a group effort, and although making the cocktail itself comes down to me, the mixologist, or you after reading this, there is a great deal of teamwork to get to the actual cocktail making. 

First, I hate to break the news, but you will need freshly squeezed lime juice for a good cocktail. I understand the hassle squeezing over two bags of limes can be, but personally, the strange aftertaste of bottled lime juice is worse than my sore arm muscles from juicing. That said, the best part about drinking a cocktail is not only the delicious flavors but getting to be with your friends. So think of juicing the limes as an early start to get together with your friends and spend quality time. Next, and somewhat inconvenient, you will need to juice your cucumbers. I recommend getting three to four Persian cucumbers for a party of five or six. Add your roughly chopped cucumbers to a blender, fill the blender 3/4s of the way with water, and blend. Then, strain the cucumber juice through and into a bowl to achieve a clear and smooth cucumber juice. I never said making a quality cocktail was an easy job! However, once the juices are ready, the fun part begins. Grab a cocktail shaker or a mason jar, add your tequila, Cointreau, lime juice, cucumber juice, simple syrup (they sell it at the Price Chopper), ice and shake away. If you are feeling extra fancy, you can make a salt rim by just dragging a cut lime around the rim of your drink and dipping it onto a plate of salt. Top your glass with sliced jalapeños, and suddenly you are no longer in Upstate New York, but rather a tropical location where the possibilities are endless. I understand that making this cocktail might seem to be too difficult and time-consuming. However, for my five other friends and myself, this Friday night ritual has brought us closer: We debate our favorite cocktails, fight over who will be juicing the limes, and rush to Byrne Dairy to grab extra bags of ice because there is no such thing as a good warm cocktail. I cannot recommend you make this drink enough, because when Friday rolls around the only thing I can imagine doing is shaking six cucumber jalapeño margaritas. 

Cucumber Jalapeño Margarita 


INGREDIENTS: (serves 1)

– 1 shot tequila

– 1 shot Cointreau 

– 1 cup of ice

– ¼ cup lime juice

– ¼ cup cucumber juice

– 2-3 squirts of simple syrup

– 1-2 thin slices of jalapeño 

– ⅓ cup flakey salt for rim 



Step 1: Pour flakey salt onto a plate. Then, with a lime wedge drag the wedge around the rim of the cup. Swirl the rim of the cup around the flakey salt to produce a salt rim. 

Step 2: Add the ice to the cocktail shaker. Then add the tequila, Cointreau, lime juice, cucumber juice and simple syrup into the shaker. If you want your drink extra spicy you can add jalapeño slices too. 

Step 3: Shake your drink until the bottle starts to feel cool — probably for a good 30 seconds.

Step 4: Slowly pour your drink into a nice glass and add a few slices of jalapeño on top.

Step 5: Sip and enjoy!