Long before “mixologist” became part of L.A.'s cocktail lexicon, you could always, and still can, rely on the bartenders at Border Grill to make a great, fresh lime juice–tinged classic margarita in various tequila and orange liqueur forms — the notable exception being happy hour, the one time we've been disappointed by watered-down versions here. It's also the sort of place where, for years, traditional Jalisco standouts like tequila with sangrita (a spicy-tart chaser made from various juices and chiles) cocktails have been equally at home. Such long-standing consistency and quality may be the antithesis of L.A.'s current trendy cocktail Twitterverse, but for that, Border Grill, we'd like to thank you. And buy you a margarita. 1445 Fourth St., Santa Monica. (310) 451-1655; 445 S. Figueroa St., dwntwn. (213) 486-5171; bordergrill.com.
—Jenn Garbee

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