The Frozen Margarita and Mariano's Frozen Margarita Machine is the Official Drink of the City of Dallas and the State of Texas!

The Man and His Machine

It was 1971 and Mariano Martinez had just opened his first restaurant in Dallas, Texas. It was an instant sensation. However, on opening night guests were complaining about the consistency of the blended margaritas that Mariano developed using his father’s secret recipe. They complained that some were nice and cold, some were melted down and some were not cold at all. Mariano immediately addressed these complaints with his bartenders. They threatened to quit, telling Mariano that the margaritas were too hard to make, especially consistently.

After a sleepless night Mariano went to get his morning cup of coffee at a local 7-11 store. When he walked in, he noticed a little girl pulling a frozen Slurpee from a machine, and it hit him. If he could make his margaritas using precise portions that he could control ahead of time instead of in the middle of a rush, and make them in large quantities and freeze the batches in a machine, his problems would be solved. Easier said than done.

It took countless hours of hard work and ingenuity. Mariano spent day and night tinkering with an old soft-serve ice cream machine, and souping it up like you would with a car. The result? The World’s First Frozen Margarita Machine. The word about his frozen margaritas spread and Mariano’s became the destination for margaritas in Dallas. And the frozen margarita machine soon became standard equipment in restaurants – exploding the popularity of tequila and early Tex-Mex cuisine both in Texas and worldwide. Mariano’s invention is such a part of our culture that, in October 2005, the World’s First Frozen Margarita Machine was inducted into the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. In September 2010 it was named one of the “Top Ten Inventions from the National Museum of American History’s Collection.

What Makes Us Different?

From the original frozen margarita to transforming Texas Ranch Grilling, innovation has always been at home in our kitchen. And it continues today with our custom-designed log fired grills. Using sweet mesquite wood logs, they burn hotter and faster than conventional grills, giving our fire-roasted salsa, fajitas and seafood incredible flavor.

Quality is Our Key Ingredient

It’s not just mesquite logs that give our food amazing taste, it’s the quality of our ingredients. Locally sourced, farm-fresh produce. Premium fajitas. All natural, Texas-grown chicken. Midwestern corn-fed steaks, hand selected and aged for 28 days. And, of course 100% Blue Agave tequila.

From the original Mariano’s that opened in 1971 to our five neighborhood restaurants, we welcome you to come on in and enjoy Texas Ranch Cuisine served by people who care, amidst authentic Texas ranch decor with a dash of vaquero. We also have special event rooms available to accommodate your next event.


  1. The Texas Origins of the Frozen Margarita Machine
  2. Mariano Martinez and the Worlds First Frozen Margarita Machine.

  3. The Southern Story Behind the Frozen Margarita Machine

  4. A Dallas Restaurant Owner Remembers Life in Texas BT-Before Tex-Mex

  5. The Most Imitated Restaurant in America

  6. My night with Jimmy Buffett
  7. A Dallas Restaurant Owner Remembers Life in Texas BT-Before Tex-Mex

  8. The Southern Story Behind the Frozen Margarita Machine

  9. The Uniquely Texan Origins of the Frozen Margarita by Franz Lidz /

  10. Margarita Machine Makes Way to Smithsonian By Coleen McCain Nelson / The Dallas Morning News

  11. The Story Of A Man Who Made It – Mariano Martinez Jr.

  12. Quick Backstory of The World’s First Frozen Margarita Machine.

  13. Bob Hope Standup at SMU

  14. National Museum of American History Acquires Frozen Margarita Machine

  15. Early Influencers: The Man Who Invented the World’s First Frozen Margarita

  16. 15 Random Things You Can Totally Thank Texas For By Brice Sander / Buzzfeed

  17. The 10 Best Margaritas in Dallas By Amy McCarthy / Dallas Observer

  18. Mariano Martinez: Inventor, Visionary, Legend Behind Great Mexican Food in DFW By Angela Patterson, Guide

  19. Margarita Machine Shook Up History – Dallas Morning News

  20. Margarita Man’s Smithsonian Adventure – The Carmel Pine Cone

  21. Parade Magazine Article

  22. Featured Restaurant: La Hacienda Ranch – Dallas Real Estate Blog

  23. Smithsonian Limelight for Margarita Machine – Monterey Herald

  24. State of Texas Proclamations

  25. Dallas City Council Proclamation

  26. D Magazine Front Burner

  27. Dallas in a Glass by Eric Celeste – Dallas Morning News

  28. Toast of the Town – Texas Driver Magazine

  29. Frozen or On The Rocks? The Margarita Revival – Tex-Mex Cookbook

  30. The First Frozen Margarita – Where Guidebook

  31. High Profile Article

  32. 14 Best Things to Do in Arlington, Texas

  33. Mariano Martinez on Rachel Ray’s Tasty Travels.