Spruce up Your Next Margarita with These Fun Recipes

Closeup of margarita with salt on rim and lime garnish

Margaritas don’t have to be limited to the traditional ingredients of tequila, orange liqueur, and lime. Fruits, such as strawberries, mangoes, and more, can be added for extra flavor. Or you can make a simple syrup with unique spices to add to your margarita. They can even be served frozen instead of on the rocks. Once you pick your preferred brand of tequila, Columbia Distributing has a few recipes for you to try the next time you’re looking to spruce up your margarita.

Strawberry Cucumber Margarita

This variation is incredibly refreshing, and the sweetness of the berry is complemented by the crisp, subtle flavor of the cucumber.


  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup reposado tequila
  • Splash orange liqueur, such as triple sec
  • 12 strawberries cut into quarters
  • 1/2 peeled and seeded cucumber to garnish
  • 2 cups ice, for blending
  • 1 lime, quartered


  1. Make a simple syrup by combining sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Remove from heat and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.
  4. Mix the remaining salt and sugar in a bowl.
  5. Combine 3/4 cup of the simple syrup, tequila, orange liqueur, quartered strawberries, cucumber, and ice in a blender.
  6. Blend until smooth.
  7. Moisten the rim of a margarita glass with lime. 
  8. Coat the rim of the glass in the sugar/salt mixture.
  9. Pour your margarita and garnish with cucumber slices. 

Mango Lime Margarita

This margarita is excellent for a hot day, and the citrus from the limes gives it a zesty kick.


  • 2 limes
  • 2 tbsp. coarse sugar
  • Two 20-oz. jars of mango chunks, drained
  • Ice, for blending
  • 1 1/2 cup tequila
  • 1 1/2 cup triple sec
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar


  1. Zest the limes and combine with coarse sugar in a bowl; set aside.
  2. Add the mangos, tequila, triple sec, granulated sugar, and ice to a blender.
  3. Blend until smooth.
  4. Wet the rim of the glass with a lime wedge and dip in lime zest/sugar mix.
  5. Pour your margarita and enjoy.

The Harvest Margarita

This specialty margarita was created by Bobby Flay, and the unique simple syrup adds a depth of flavor thanks to a handful of pungent spices.


  • 2 oz reposado tequila
  • 1 1/2 oz. chilled spiced simple syrup, consisting of:
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 8 whole allspice berries
    • 8 whole cloves
    • 3 cinnamon sticks
    • 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 oz. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • A few dashes of bitters
  • Lime wedge, for garnish
  • Ice, for blending


  1. For the simple syrup, combine the sugar, 1 cup water, allspice, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger in a small saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil and cook until the sugar is completely melted.
  3. Remove from heat and let steep for one hour.
  4. Strain into a small bowl, cover, and chill in the refrigerator.
  5. In a blender, combine tequila, simple syrup, lime juice, bitters, and ice.
  6. Blend for 10 seconds.
  7. Serve over ice and garnish with a slice of lime.

For Recipes and Tequila, Contact Columbia Distributing

Whether you’re making a traditional margarita or mixing it up with unique ingredients, Columbia Distributing carries several brands of tequila that are perfect for margaritas. Contact us today to learn more about the brands we carry and distribute to businesses in Oregon, California, and Washington.

Star Wars-Themed Drinks

Rye Whiskey Cocktail

Star Wars is one of the most popular science fiction movie series in existence. Over the years, its fan base has grown so large it has earned its own holiday. People all over the world join together, put on costumes, and throw parties every May 4. You can enhance your next celebration with these Star Wars Day drink recipes from Columbia Distributing, which are sure to be a hit with your crowd.

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The Art of the Cocktail

Chilled Grapefruit Cocktail

Creating and making cocktails is considered by many as an art form, requiring many bartenders to spend years perfecting their craft. Whether they’re mastering the classics or creating a drink of their own, professional bartenders and home mixologists alike are always finding new ways to please the palate. But where did cocktails come from, and how did we end up with the thousands of recipes we have access to today? Columbia Distributing provides alcoholic and non-alcoholic products to bars and other businesses across the Pacific Northwest, and here’s what we know about the art of cocktail creation.

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What to Drink for Cinco de Mayo

Margarita cocktail with lime wheels and mint

Cinco de Mayo is fast approaching, and you may already be stocking up on piñatas, taco shells, and the like. But have you determined what will be on your drink menu? Whether you’re hosting a party or eating in, any holiday deserves a good beverage, especially one that brings out the best of spring. To help you prepare, Columbia Distributing in Portland, Oregon, suggests these Cinco de Mayo drinks to serve at your festivities.

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Unpalatable: When You Can’t Stomach that New Bottle

Cheap Alcoholic Beverages

Whether you’ve purchased a low-quality product or the taste is completely different than you expected, there comes a time for all of us when we purchase a bottle of bad alcohol. Once it’s open, you can’t return it, but there are a few things you can do so it doesn’t completely go to waste. Here, Columbia Distributing provides some suggestions.

Filter the Alcohol a Few Extra Times

One of the main issues with cheaper liquor and spirits is that the alcohol in question is given a very short distillation time and filtration process – affecting its taste drastically. The amount of time something is filtered directly corresponds to whether or not a spirit has that harsh burning sensation after you swallow it.

Luckily, there are a couple of easy ways for you can filter cheap alcohol at home and alleviate that bad aftertaste, including using a water pitcher with a filtration system in it. You can also strain it through a coffee filter and food-grade activated charcoal. Charcoal has been used to filter impurities out of spirits for centuries, making this a tried and true method.

Don’t Drink It Straight – Use a Mixer

If you’re looking to pour a few shots, avoid doing so with bad alcohol by itself. Instead, use mixers to alter the bitter taste. Many people use fruit juices or seltzer water to help wash it down. While this is an excellent option, you should aim to mix the alcohol with natural fruit juices and unsweetened seltzer. This is because bad-tasting alcohol is typically very dehydrating, and the added sugars in some mixers will only make the dehydration worse. Be sure to read the labels of whatever mixer you purchase to be sure that the added sugars are close to or at zero, as fruit already has natural sugars.

Infuse Cheap Spirits, Like Vodka

If you have a clear spirit like vodka or gin that needs an extra something to make it more palatable, you can infuse your bad alcohol. The most popular choice is fruit, such as apples, strawberries, watermelon, and the like. This is an exceptionally good idea if you’re looking to make cocktails with it, as the natural sugars in the fruit will add a sweetness that can cut the harshness of the alcohol and make it easier to consume. You can also use certain herbs and spices like cinnamon or mint. Of course, a combination of fruit and herbs, like watermelon and mint or apple and cinnamon, go very well together, as well.

For the Best Results, Combine These Methods

Doing any one of these things on their own will help alleviate the burn and bad taste associated with bad alcohol, but using two or more of these methods in combination can turn a bottle of cheap alcohol into a high-end spirit of your own making. At the very least, we recommend filtering the alcohol and infusing it afterward. For more tips and tricks or to view our range of products, contact Columbia Distributing today.

Best Wine and Spirits Storage Solutions

Wine Cellar Barrels

Alcohol is used for celebrations of all kinds, and when there is a special occasion, you break out the wine and spirits. While you may not think much of it, certain storage requirements should be maintained to ensure the integrity and quality of your alcohol. At Columbia Distributing, we offer a wide variety of products, including wine and spirits. Here are some of our best practices for wine and spirit storage.

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Enhancing Your Sparkling Water

Fruity Sparkling Water

There’s something extra refreshing about a cold soft drink on a hot day. The carbonation mixed with delicious flavors makes for a beverage that you want to come back to time and time again. Though many of the soft drinks we love are chock-full of sugars that make you feel slow and bloated, you can still get the refreshing zing of a soda without the sugar. Sparkling water is perfect for those looking to get that satisfying zing of soda without the sugar crash. Best of all, you can add virtually whatever you want to it to give it a customized flavor fit to your liking. Columbia Distributing carries an assortment of sparkling water brands, and here are a few ways to enhance yours.

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Delicious Family-Friendly Mocktails for All Your Guests

Closeup of five mocktails being toasted

Whether you’re having dinner with family or throwing a gathering with friends, it’s always important to have beverages on hand that your guests will enjoy. While beer, wine, or cocktails are usually fine, some guests can’t have or don’t prefer alcoholic beverages. Instead of limiting their choices to just water or soft drinks, it’s always a good idea to offer up a fun mocktail. At Columbia Distributing, we know how important a feeling of togetherness and inclusion is at a gathering. Here, we offer up a few mocktail recipes that will work for all your guests, no matter their age or alcohol preference.

Blueberry Guava Mocktail

With its bright and fruit-forward flavors, this mocktail is great for brunch gatherings.


  • 2 oz. lemon/lime-flavored soda
  • 5 oz. blueberry simple syrup
  • 5 to 2 oz. guava juice
  • Seltzer
  • Ice


  1. Fill a tall glass with ice.
  2. Combine the blueberry simple syrup, lemon-lime flavored soda, and guava juice.
  3. Top with seltzer.
  4. Garnish the leftover blueberry simple syrup.

Non-Alcoholic Sangria

Sangria is always a refreshing crowdpleaser at events and functions. This non-alcoholic sangria comes very close to the taste you get from a traditional one.


  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 black tea bags
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 thinly sliced orange
  • 1 thinly sliced lemon
  • 1 thinly sliced lime
  • 1 apple, cored and cubed
  • 3 cups cold sparkling water or club soda


  1. Steep the black tea bags and cinnamon in boiling water for five minutes.
  2. Remove and discard the tea bags.
  3. Stir in sugar until it dissolves.
  4. In a large pitcher, combine tea and cinnamon sticks with the pomegranate juice, orange juice, and sliced fruit.
  5. Refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight for a more intense flavor. 
  6. Add sparkling water to the pitcher before serving.
  7. Serve in glasses over ice.

7UP and Watermelon Float

This sweet, brightly colored drink is sure to be a hit with everyone, especially the children. It’s a fast, easy twist on the traditional root beer float.


  • Cherry 7UP
  • Concentrated fruit juice with a watermelon flavor
  • Vanilla ice cream


  1. Fill the glass halfway with Cherry 7UP.
  2. Add three to five drops of the fruit juice concentrate and stir.
  3. Place roughly two scoops of ice cream on top, or until the drink reaches the brim.

For More Mocktail Recipes, Contact Columbia Distributing

When throwing a gathering, be sure to serve beverages that everyone can enjoy. Making family-friendly mocktails is the perfect way to accomplish this. And with the wide variety of brands available through Columbia Distributing, your business will never be short on the supplies your customers need for their celebrations. Contact us today for more information about our beverage distribution services throughout Oregon, California, and Washington.

The Summarized History of Vodka

Pouring Vodka Shots

For centuries, people have enjoyed vodka all over the globe. Whether it’s used for cooking and cocktails or to sterilize injuries in a pinch, vodka has an astounding array of uses. ivermectin tablets for humans canada With countless brands and various proofs, vodka quite literally comes in all shapes and sizes for everyone of legal drinking age to enjoy. But how much do you know about vodka history – where it comes from, how it’s made, when it was invented? At Columbia Distributing, we provide several different types of vodka to retailers across the Pacific Coast, and here, we provide a brief history of vodka.

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Snacks for One: Healthy Pairings when Quarantining Alone

Healthy Snack Mix

The quarantine lifestyle has taken a toll on our eating habits. It’s all too easy to run out and get some fast food or grab a couple of snacks on your way back from the grocery store. The food we eat gives us the fuel needed to get through the day. Having a set of high-nutrient quarantine snacks handy for when hunger strikes can help you maintain higher levels of energy while meeting your body’s nutritional needs. Plus, pairing healthy snacks with the right drinks can make satisfying your hunger even sweeter. Here are a few healthy snack and drink ideas from the team at Columbia Distributing.

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