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Chuy's Summer Cocktails

My tried-and-true formula for a successful Chuy's experience usually goes something like this: Texas Martini + Chips + Creamy Jalapeño Dressing + Steak Burrito = Bliss.

When I deviate from this formula, I go for "Chuychanga" or chile rellenos instead of the burrito. But the Texas Martini almost always seems too good to pass up. Served in a radioactive green shaker and garnished with a jalapeño-stuffed olive, this powerful cocktail inevitably makes all my ills fade into the background so that the only issue on my mind is whether refried beans are preferable to charro.

But last night I broke from convention. Feeling especially bold after a rather successful wrangle with some bureaucrats at the U.S. Passport office, I remember thinking something like, "routines are for unadventurous old fogies!" So, I ordered the Palapa Punch, one of Chuy's new summer cocktails, for just under $7.

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I expected this rosy-pink libation to pack a lot of punch (har), and I wasn't disappointed. Three Olives Cherry Vodka and 1800 Reposado Tequila combine with orange and lime juices, agave nectar, and Monin pomegranate syrup to produce a full-flavored yet amazing light beverage that definitely left me more than a little buzzed. I finished my first (and only) Palapa Punch in less than 15 minutes and summoned all my willpower not to order two more in quick succession. But I kept the little umbrella as a souvenir.

Other seasonable options include the pricy Grandma's Rockin' Rita ($8.95), a top-shelf margarita made from 1800 Silver tequila, lime juice and Grand Marnier, and the more modest Cherry Limeade ($5.25) with Three Olives Cherry Vodka, fresh lime juice and Sprite.

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