Where To Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in Houston

May is here, which means it’s time to celebrate Cinco de Mayo — the day in which we celebrate Mexico’s surprising victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla. Cinco de Mayo falls on a Friday this year so it seems appropriate to celebrate by immersing yourself in Mexican food and drink.

Batanga (908 Congress) is calling all hungry, spice-lovin’ patrons to join its Inferno Taco eating contest. There will be plenty of $5 margaritas to wash down the habanero heat and hours of live music and dancing to work it all off afterwards.

Cadillac Bar (various locations) is forgoing the house margarita special and discounting their Peach Diablo Margarita and Mexican beers insead. Calling their party “nacho average Cinco de Mayo celebration,” (ouch) both locations feature fajitas and live music throughout the evening. Reservations are recommended for this special event.

El Patio (6444 Westheimer) is always a fantastic choice—if you can arrive early enough to grab a table. Club No Minors’ margaritas always seem to attract half of the city. Happy hour is all day, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., and the Blue margarita is only $6.50—or upgrade to a Patron Silver margarita for $9. Plenty of food specials combined with complimentary valet guarantee a full bar, so call (713) 780-0410 for a reservation.

The Jalapeno Margarita at Fusion Taco Heights, for those who like it spicy. Photo by Dragana Harris.

Fusion Taco Heights (4706 N. Main St) sling tacos for $3 each along with $6 Coronaritas, making this a can’t miss celebration spot. Our favorites are the BBQ Berkshire Pork and Asian Angus Steak tacos.

Hugo’s (1600 Westheimer Rd) wants diners to take the afternoon off and is offering a $5 margarita or Paloma at lunch. Happy hour is expanded, beginning at lunch and running until 6:30 p.m. The featured tequilas are Casa Nobles, El Tesoro, Gran Centenario and Espolon. Live music starts at 5:30 p.m. Xochi (1777 Walker St) and Caracol (2200 Post Oak Blvd #160) are offering the same specials, with slight entertainment differences. Xochi will have mariachis after 7 p.m. and Caracol will have live music starting at 5:30 p.m.

Le Bistro – Culinary Institute LeNotre (7070 Allensby St) is hosting an evening of fine dining, serving a mouth-watering, five-course menu that includes Carnitas de Pato (duck) and Aguachile de Vieras (scallop ceviche) for only $45. Three drinks are also included with the meal. Diners can choose from a special selection of Casa Madero wines, or opt for Mexican beer instead. Reservations are recommended for this special event. http://www.lebistro-houston.com/5-de-mayo-mexican-fine-dinner

Molina’s Buenos Tiempos platter and Famous Margarita. Photo by Kimberly Park.

Molina’s Cantina (various locations) has been serving their Tex-Mex fare and margaritas for more than six decades and they aren’t showing any signs of slowing down. For Cinco de Mayo, all locations are serving palate-pleasing $5 margaritas and $3 draft beer specials, along with complimentary chips and queso at the bar. Live entertainment runs from 6 to 10 p.m.

Sylvia’s Enchilada Kitchen (various locations) is celebrating all day, slinging their house margaritas for $6.50 and the top shelf Perfect Patron margarita for $10. Chicken and Cheese enchiladas are only $3, so all guests can fill their bellies on the Enchilada Queen’s fine cuisine without hurting their wallets.

The Pastry War (310 Main St) has a great, don’t-miss happy hour every day with $5 house margaritas, $3 Mexican beers and free pool. Owner Bobby Heugel calls the house margarita the “best he’s ever had” but we prefer their mescal margarita, with the smoke and chili pepper flavors that tickle the taste buds in all the right ways.

Enjoy plenty of margaritas (and tacos!) this Cinco de Mayo, but be sure to do so responsibly. Don’t drive if overindulgence happens—whether on purpose on on accident. Transportation services like The Wave, Uber and cabs exist for moments like these.

Josh Armendariz is Houston Food Finder’s lead freelance beer and cocktail writer. He can often be found on a stool at your favorite bar, sipping a hoppy craft beer and talking about the Astros with anyone who’ll lend an ear. Follow him on Instagram at @drinkwithjosh.

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