Where to Find the Best Margaritas in Tempe

Prickly Pear. Mango. Frozen. On the rocks. This is your guide to sipping our favorite cocktail.

Anyone who’s sipped on a few margaritas can tell you there’s a roster of important decisions to be made when ordering this traditionally tequila cocktail. On the rocks or frozen. With salt or sugar. House or specialty. Classic or prickly pear?

In Tempe, though, you must also select the ambiance — casual or upscale. And, of course, your seat — at the bar or on the patio. Then there’s the flavors, which we’ve raised to an art form. From Blackberry and pineapple to dragonfruit and blood orange, margaritas in Tempe are a passport for your palate.

Most popular in Arizona, you’ll find any where worth its salt has a version of Prickly Pear Margarita. Bright pink in color, this drink celebrates the pink cactus fruit that grows and is harvested throughout Arizona. This cocktail is a rite of passage for visitors who are fans of sweet and photogenic drinks.

As for navigating the rest of this agave-inspired landscape, here’s our guide to the more unforgettable margaritas in Tempe:

Aunt Chiladas Tempe
2019 W. Baseline Road, Tempe, AZ 85283

Located at the Arizona Grand Resort, Aunt Chilada’s Tempe location is truly an off-the-beaten-path hidden gem — complete with an indoor dining room as well as a cantina-style patio. And the margaritas are as excellent as the ambiance. Choose from a lineup that includes such unique offerings as the Mango Ghost Margarita, with mango purée and Canyon Diablo Two Ghosts Chili Vodka; the Prickly Pineapple margarita, with Ilegal Mezcal, pineapple Juice, prickly pear juice; and the Tamarindo Margarita with Lalo Tequila, triple sec and tamarindo purée. Cheers!

Barrio Queen
Tempe Marketplace | 31 S. McClintock Drive, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-912-4052

Located at Tempe Marketplace, Barrio Queen has a massive patio and beautiful mural welcoming you to the restaurant. With a dozen margaritas to choose from, you’re sure to fall in love with tequila or at least find a new way to love it. Try the Sparkarita Margarita for something fun and fresh – made with Milagro Reposado Tequila, Delirio Reposado Mezcal, lemon juice, Azunia Agave, Velvet Falernum and garnished with a grilled lemon wheel. Need I say more?

Culinary Dropout
149 S. Farmer Ave., Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-240-1601

The knock-you-off-your-feet Cali and Tay Skinny Margarita from Culinary Dropout encompasses Corazon Blanco Tequila, serrano spiced agave, fresh lime and chili dusted rim. Enjoy your beverage while lounging on the oversized patio with corn-hole games, ping pong tables and live music on the weekends – all illuminated under twinkling lights.

Garcia’s Mexican Restaurant
Arizona Mills | 5000 S. Arizona Mills Circle, Tempe, AZ 85282 | 480-838-9610
1706 E. Warner Road, Tempe, AZ 85284 | 480-838-1005

The margarita options are almost endless here. Choose from Blackberry Citrus, Strawberry Mango, Caribbean Blue and the Cilantro Mango Cucumber, a combo of 1800 Silver Tequila, muddled cucumber, cilantro, mango puree and chili powder, shaken to perfection. They also offer a Skinny Margarita that’s under 100 calories. And, that’s just the beginning of the full list.

Ghost Ranch
1006 E. Warner Road, #102-103, Tempe, AZ 85284 | 480-474-4328

I’m obsessed with Ghost Ranch. The décor and the food are exploding with gorgeous colors. I recently went there with a group of friends and tried their oh so delicious Prickly Pear Frozé (pictured). You read that right… Prickly Pear Frozé is that perfect drink blending a quality blanco tequila with rosé, prickly pear and lime. When the team at Ghost Ranch described it to me… I about died and then quickly demanded it. “It’s a frozen margarita that fell in love with a glass of cold rosé and had the most perfect, well-balanced, cocktail baby.” Tell me that does not make you want to try this very photogenic drink!! I dare you.

Gertrude’s at Desert Botanical Garden
1201 N. Galvin Parkway, Phoenix, AZ 85008 | 480-719-8600

A sprawling, shaded patio nestled in the beautiful desert, you’ll find Getrude’s located at the Desert Botanical Garden. Whether you’re heading into the Garden or just wanting to enjoy a wonderful meal, you must try their oh-so-vibrant Dragonfruit Margarita! We love the gorgeous color and the flavors are so refreshing. Don’t forget about their Rosé Sangria if tequila isn’t your favorite!

Illegal Pete’s 
525 S. Mill Ave., Tempe, AZ 85281 | 623-233-4311

Illegal Pete’s is a fun place with incredible patio space to knock back a few margaritas. The Coin-Style margs are made with Pete’s Patrón—Patrón Reposado selected by Pete himself—and the House margs are $1 off during happy hour from 3-6 p.m. every day. I personally love to pair their Chicken Quesadilla with any margarita because it allows me to reach all my food pyramid needs.

Loco Patron
222 S. Mill Ave. #115, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-699-0922

Loco Patron offers incredible taco and margarita specials and has a great patio for watching ASU sports! The Carlos Margarita is a must-try. This marg is made up of Don Julio Reposado, three fresh-squeezed limes, Grand Marnier float and a salted rim. It doesn’t get fresher than that! You can also choose one of their other great margaritas, like the Limon y Chile or the Mango Habanero.

Pedal Haus Brewery
730 S. Mill Ave., #102, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-314-2337

Voted one of the “15 Best Patios in Phoenix” by, Pedal Haus is a cool place to hang out from the inside out. Their Haus Margarita features Sauza Blue Weber Agave Tequila, Haus made sweet & sour, orange liqueur, and a half rim of salt. Get one for $1 off during their happy hour from 3-6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, in addition to select Haus Beers and well drinks. I usually go hard on their appetizers because select starters are $1 off, then I get a marg to round out the meal. After work or on the weekend, I’ll often find myself lounging in the fold up patio furniture around the fire pit with great friends. Don’t mind if I do.

Snakes & Lattes Tempe
20 W. 6th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-361-6644
Drinking. Games. Drinking games?! Snakes & Lattes in Downtown Tempe is a game haven with more than 1,000 board games from cards to strategy (a one-time game fee per day gets you unlimited access to their games). They also specialize in blended margaritas. We highly recommend trying the Mango marg. Delish! We’ve spent hours here because it has a cool atmosphere, two pet-friendly patios and array of food and beverage options. They do offer a great selection of local beers, wines on tap and even ciders are on rotation. Their ever-changing selection of adult beverages makes it a place you have to try monthly, if not weekly.

Social Hall
715 S. McClintock Drive, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-747-3851

This local hub serves great food and craft cocktails inspired by Latin America and the U.S. When I can, I hang out at Social Hall with friends on the patio to enjoy drinks around the fire pits. This spot is also filled with photo-ops, including lounging on the hammocks outside or under the iconic “vibes” neon light against the palm wallpaper. I recently tried their Spicy Strawberry Margarita and loved it so much that I had two…but who’s counting

1314 S. Rural Road, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-446-8226 
101 E. Baseline Road, Tempe, AZ 85283 | 480-839-8226
With its counter-service, colorful décor and ample seating, this is a great spot for foodies who love Mexican food. Enjoy the Vasquez Family’s time-tested recipes and perfected fresh-made margaritas. Need to take your food to go? No problem! Order traditional or strawberry margaritas TOGO (must order food with alcohol purchase).  

Sunbar Tempe
24 W. 5th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-687-8409

If you are a kombucha fanatic or just want to try a fun new drink, the Sunbar Margarita is something you need to get your hands on. A margarita is already an amazing cocktail on its own but adding fizzy, fermented watermelon wonder kombucha to it? Talk about refreshing! It’s just the perfect afternoon drink for the upcoming hot days ahead. Don’t believe me? Try it for yourself on their spacious outdoor patio.

Thirsty Lion Gastropub
Tempe Marketplace | 2000 E. Rio Salado Parkway, #1041, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-968-2920

Margaritas + Shopping? Yes, please! Let Thirsty Lion Gastropub at Tempe Marketplace quench your thirst for the finer things. Their Signature Blood Orange Margarita is an exceptional twist on a classic drink. P.S. it’s so pretty! Blood Orange is also very Arizona of us to have — citrus is one of our specialties. If you haven’t seen (or tasted) a blood orange, it’s time. It’s nice to walk off the food and drinks afterwards by strolling through The District at Tempe Marketplace. Here, you’ll find lots of shopping, places for a sweet treat or go bar hopping at other eateries. Earn those calories!

Additional spots for sipping excellent margaritas in Tempe:

Alibi at Canopy by Hilton Tempe Downtown
108 E. University Drive, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 602-612-7872

C.A.S.A. Tempe
5 E. 6th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-557-8226

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop
350 S Mill Ave., Suite 101, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-968-8226

Hundred Mile Brewing Co.
690 N. Scottsdale Road, Tempe, AZ 85288 | 480-256-1623

Lucero Rooftop Restaurant & Bar at Omni Tempe Hotel at ASU
7 E. University Drive, Tempe, AZ 85281 | 602-794-8670

Macayo’s Mexican Food
650 N. Scottsdale Road, Tempe, AZ 85288 | 480-967-2552

The Porch – Tempe
1128 E. Baseline Road, Tempe, AZ 85283 | 602-777-1757

Thirsty Cactus at Marriott Phoenix Resort Tempe at The Buttes
2000 W. Westcourt Way, Tempe, AZ 85282 | 602-225-9000 (hotel)

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