Commemorating the Mexican defeat of a French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, Cinco de Mayo may not be widely celebrated in Mexico, but sure is in Houston, where it’s become more of a way to honor Mexican-American culture (and a way to enjoy a margarita or two). This year’s holiday falls on a Saturday, so expect the celebrations to be extra special.
From bars throwing tequila-fueled fiestas to restaurants offering specials on margaritas, tacos and tamales, get your plans in order with this Houston Cinco de Mayo roundup:
3rd Floor, Pub Fiction and Irish Cowboy, 2303 Smith
The Midtown powerhouse will be throwing its 7th Annual Cinco de Midtown Fest, offering plenty of ‘ritas, fajita tacos and tequila shots, plus live DJ performances and over 45,000 square feet of party space. Admission is $20 for all three bars. Doors open at 11 a.m.
Alicia’s Mexican Grille, multiple locations
All four locations of Alicia’s Mexican Grille will be offering a a five-day Cinco de Mayo holiday special, beginning Tuesday, May 1 and running through Saturday, May 5. Guests can enjoy limited-time features like the five street-style tacos, loaded with beef, chicken, or al pastor, all the fixings, and a side of salsa verde for $10.95, plus the new tropical inspired, handmade Mariachi Coco margarita, freshly shaken and poured on the rocks with souvenir shakers for $9.
Ambriza Social Mexican Kitchen, Ambriza Social Mexican Kitchen
This vibrant Mexican eatery will be hosting a Cinco de Mayo Pop-Up Artisan Market, featuring local and regional artisans, live music, and food and drink, from noon to 8 p.m.
Arnaldo Richards’ Picos, 3601 Kirby
Celebrate Cinco de Mayo weekend with a lineup of offerings from Thursday, May 3 through Sunday, May 6. Events include a Tequila Herradura Dinner on Thursday, with four courses and beverage pairings for $99 per person, plus tax and gratuity; Cuatro Margaritas on Friday; a Cinco de Mayo Fiesta Under the Big Top, featuring DJ sets, drink specials, a street food stand, and all-day party from 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. on Saturday; and a Cinco de Mayo Recovery Brunch ($32 per person, regular menu also available) from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.
Bistro Provence, 13616 Memorial
The French eatery is letting bygones be bygones with a special Franco de Mayo lunch, showcasing French-influenced dishes that are a part of traditional Mexican fare. The a la carte three-course menu includes dishes such as soupe de tortilla au crouton (tortilla soup with croutons), crêpe au poulet with sauce avocet (chicken crepes filled with avocado sauce like enchiladas) and crème caramel (a sweet custard similar to flan). The regular menu will also be available.
Boheme, 307 Fairview
The Montrose hangout will be celebrating two special events with a Cinco de Derby party.
Caracol, 2200 Post Oak, #160
Head to this coastal Mexican joint to enjoy brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with specials including a Mexican-style crawfish boil ($25) and fish taco plates ($16). Krug de Mayo will take place from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., with Champagne and Oysters specials. Happy hour runs from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m.; and an optional Patron Roca Tequila Paired Menu runs throughout dinner service from 3 to 11 p.m.
Cinco in the City at Silver Street Studios, 2000 Edwards
In The City Productions and Silver Street Studios will host a celebration of Mexican-American culture at Cinco in the City, featuring a Family Cultural Experience from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and a Margaritas & Mezcal Experience from 7 p.m. to midnight. Guests can expect live music, art exhibits, salsa lessons, papel picados, piñatas and vendors selling regional Mexican food favorites, home goods, jewelry and art. Taste regional samplings from authentic favorites like La Cuchara and Jarritos, plus vendor treats including aguas frescas, churros and elote. The Family Cultural Experience tickets are for $5 for children 12 and under and $10 adults; and the Margaritas and Mezcal Experience tickets are $45 general admission and $100 VIP.
Eight Row Flint, 1039 Yale
The modern icehouse and neighborhood hangout will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo and Derby Day, offering $5 margaritas all day and bringing back the Big Ass Frozen Margarita, served in a 16-ounce goblet for $16. Those looking to celebrate the Kentucky Derby can enjoy the Eight Row Flint Julep will still be on the menu (available all month long), made with Pierre Ferrand 1840 Cognac, Barton Bonded Bourbon, Hamilton Jamaican Black Rum, Amontillado Sherry Cordial and mint.
El Big Bad, 419 Travis
This Downtown tequila temple will be throwing down all Cinco de Mayo Weekend long, from Friday, May 3 through Sunday, May 6. Expect live music, margarita specials, shot samples, facepainting, a photo booth and more.
Fielding’s local kitchen + bar, 26400 Kuykendahl
The Woodlands hotspot will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo with live music on the patio and a special menu featuring Mexican street food. Guests can enjoy Mexican beer and two feature cocktails: Salted Watermelon Margarita and Chili Mango Margarita. The patio party runs from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., with live music from noon to 3 p.m.
FM Kitchen and Bar, 1112 Shepherd
Beginning at 11 a.m., guests are invited to celebrated "Cinco de Derby" at FM Kitchen and Bar, with offerings blending Kentucky Derby and Cinco de Mayo traditions. Enjoy $5 Tequila Juleps and a "Kentucky Hot Brown Breakfast Taco" (turkey, bacon, Mornay and eggs) from chef Ryan Hildebrand.
The Houstonian, 111 North Post Oak
Enjoy a Cinco de Mayo Happy Hour at The Bar at The Houstonian Hotel from 3 to 6 p.m. Sommelier Vanessa Boyd will be mixing up exotic renditions of traditional south-of-the-border drinks. Sample three margaritas for $10, including the "Mango Matador", made with Sotol (Tequila's dangerously delicious cousin), and the "Lights Out" made with mezcal, a smoky spirit made from agave.
Howl at the Moon, 612 Hadley
Head to this Midtown party spot and dueling piano bar to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with drink specials, including $3 Corona Extra, $5 Cuervo shots and margaritas and $20 86-ounce Cuervo Blue Margarita Buckets.
Hugo’s, 1600 Westheimer
Head to this Mexican hotspot for all-day drink specials, plus a Cinco de Mayo Street Foods of Mexico Brunch Buffet from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. ($28 per adult, $12 per child); a Suerte Tequila Happy Hour from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m.; a signature tequila-paired tasting menu (alongside the regular menu) from 3 to 11 p.m.; and live music by mariachis and the house band, Viento, from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m.
Lupe Tortilla, multiple locations
The Tex-Mex staple will be celebrating with local artists performing at select locations, and diners can enjoy festive eats like sizzling, lime-pepper marinated beef and chicken fajitas, warm, hand-pressed flour and corn tortillas that are made to order, chili con queso with real cheddar cheese, house-made salsa and guacamole, and flavorful margaritas made with freshly-squeezed lime juice.
Market Square Park, 301 Milam
Beginning at 5 p.m., the Houston Downtown Management District brings the Cinco de Mayo festivities to Market Square Park. Guests can enjoy a concert in the park with live music from local favorite Los Skarnales and ice cold cerveza from Niko Niko’s (guests are encouraged to bring blankets and chairs for lounging on the lawn). After the concert, neighborhood bars and restaurants will continue the celebration with specials on festive fare.
Hit up Molina’s on Bellaire or Westheimer to toast Mexico’s independence with drink specials all day and live music from 6 to 10 p.m. Enjoy $6 Molina’s Magaritas — made with 100-percent agave tequila and served frozen or on the rocks — and $7 La Luna Azur margaritas, featuring featuring Dulce Vida organic tequila, Blue Curaçao, agave nectar and a splash of soda. There will also be $3.75 to $4.25 beer bottles and free chips and queso at the bar.
Part & Parcel, 1700 Smith
Celebrate Cuatro and Cinco de Mayo with a two-day party at Part & Parcel. Guests can expect specials like $4 Mexican beers, $5 frozen 'ritas and two for $6 street tacos.
Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille, multiple locations
Perry’s has released a new limited time cocktail perfect for Cinco de Mayo, available through Thursday, May 10. The Rita Rosé Olé is a twist on the traditional margarita, featuring both a Mexican wine (Casa Madero Rosé) and a Mexican tequila (Codigo 1530 Rosa Tequila).
Pistolero’s, 1517 Westheimer
This Montrose taco and tequila slinger will be throwing its annual Cinco de Mayo Parking Lot Party from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Expect $6 Sauza Margaritas, music by DJ Fred Ster, a photo booth and plenty of revelry.
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Santo de Mayo Pub Crawl in Montrose
Saint Arnold Brewery’s famous pub crawl returns to Montrose for Cinco de Mayo. Start at Rudyard's British Pub, 2010 Waugh, at 2 p.m. to pick up your punch card and route, with possible stops including The Hay Merchant, The Burger Joint, El Real Tex-Mex Cafe, Poison Girl Cocktail Lounge, Pistolero's and Goodnight Charlie's before the last stop at La Grange, 2517 Ralph, for the after-party and souvenir pint glass pickup at 6 p.m. The crawl is free to attend and designated drivers are also eligible for the prize.
Sylvia’s Enchilada Kitchen, 6401 Woodway, 1140 Eldridge
Hit either location to enjoy the new “Cinco de Mayo” Enchilada and special prices on margaritas this Cinco de Mayo. Look for Sylvia's House Margaritas for $6.50; Sylvia's Skinny Margaritas made with Demetrio Blanco Tequila and Z Tequila Margaritas, both for $10 each; and The Perfect Casamigo Margaritas for just $11. Saluting the Puebla region in Mexico where the battle took place (long credited for being the birthplace of mole), the special enchilada mesquite-grilled chicken, wrapped in fresh made tortillas and topped with Sylvia’s own mole sauce.
Texas Taco Tequila & Margarita Festival and Cinco De Mayo
Preservation Park, 130 Spring School
Head to Spring’s Preservation Park for this family-friendly festival, featuring 30-plus taco vendors, ten-plus flavors of margaritas both frozen and on the rocks, tequila flights, live music, mariachi bands, a kids zone with carnival rides and inflatables, retail vendors and more. The event runs from noon to midnight. Tickets are $7 for general admission and $85 for VIP.
Xochi, 1777 Walker
Downtown’s hottest restaurant will offer a Cinco de Mayo Brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Guests can enjoy
Xochi’s traditional Saturday brunch/lunch menu with featured specials, including Suerte Tequila margaritas and Xicaru Mezcal cocktail specials ($7.50), plus a Celebration of Mole tasting menu with three courses for $27. Happy hour will take place at the bar from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m.; and Xochi will also be offering a Wines of Mexico special from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and an optional Tequila Tasting menu from 3 to 11 p.m.