What is Cinco de Mayo about? Well what is it supposed to be about really, besides a great excuse to break out that tequila you hid in the back of the liquor cabinet from the last time things went all ...
Let's be honest, stateside Cinco de Mayo has morphed into another great excuse to celebrate with a cool beverage. As if Monday to Wednesday wasn't enough of a reason. Most people don't even know what Cinco de mayo is in celebration of. Seriously, I just asked my mom (my amiga in crime) what she knew or wanted to know about Cinco de Mayo. She replied that she knew Cinco de Mayo was the celebration of Mexican Independence. *facepalm*
My madre is a perfect example of what most people think Cinco is about. The celebration of Mexican Independence with frozen margaritas and cheap tequila shots with a salt and lime kicker. We are so mistaken.
So what are the facts? May 5th is not the day of Mexican Independence. That is on September 16th. Cinco De Mayo is the celebration of the Battle of Puebla. On May 5th, 1862, the Mexican army defeated the French Empire in a hard fought victory. Though the French overran the Mexican forces in following battles, this victory was a significant morale boost for the Mexican forces who defeated the better equipped and larger French forces.
In regional areas of Mexico, primarily Puebla, this day is celebrated with ceremonial parades, fiestas, and
re-enactment held yearly near the Mexico City International Airport.
In the United States, Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of Mexican culture. Often celebrated with parades, fiestas, Mexican food and drink, and usually many a sombrero and poncho decked out amigo. Cinco de Mayo in the States is more than just an excuse to crack open a couple of Pacificos over a plate of nachos. Or worse, the dreaded tequila shots with a salt start and a lime wedge back.
So how can you up your Cinco game this year? By mixing up some authentically Mexican cocktails! We've put together a list of 7 Cinco worthy cocktails to bring the fest to your fiesta!
The Paloma is easily one of Mexico's most favorite and. the States more under represented of the south of the border cocktails. This grapefruit and tequila concoction has been dwarfed in the states by the margarita, but definitely deserves center stage on your bar.
Crafted from a blend of lime, grapefruit soda, salt and tequila, this cocktail has the citrus and salt kick to wake up the palate and pair beautifully with Mexican cuisine or just a hot day. It's my go to for the summer, especially the beach.
To make the Paloma, you will need:
2 oz Tequila Blanco
1/2oz Lime Juice
Pinch of salt
Take the highball glass and fill with ice. Sprinkle the salt right in. That's right. Just add the salt directly into the drink. No silly rims here. Pour in the 2 oz of tequila. My preferred is Espolon Tequila. Freshly squeeze 1/2 oz of lime juice. Makes all the difference. Pop the top on the grapefruit soda and pour to the rim. Go with Jarritos brand if you can find it. If not, I've tried Q Drinks Grapefruit and absolutely loved it. Give the whole thing a quick stir and enjoy. Tell me thats not delicious!
Think of the Michelada as a Mexican Bloody Mary. It's made of the same basic parts, with customizations unique to each bartender, and is best enjoyed the morning after a rough night. A little pelo de perro for the morning after your Cinco.
For the basic outline to a Michelada, you need:
4oz tomato or clamato juice, chilled
1 bottle chilled Mexican lager
1 tbsp of lime juice
1/4 tsp of Worcestershire
1/8 tsp of hot sauce (more if you want spicy)
1/8 tsp of Maggi Seasoning
3/4 tsp salt
Sprinkle of chili powder
Highball glass or shaker pint glass
Over ice, pour in the tomato juice (I hate Clamato juice), lime juice, Worcestershire, hot sauce, and Maggi seasoning. If you are making a big batch (you know for that 6th of May brunch) mix the above ingredients in a pitcher sans ice and put in the fridge.
No one really knows who invented the margarita. Seriously its a mystery. However, there are plenty of stories alluding to the origin, all of which revolve around various ladies with the name Margarita or a variation of it.
However, there is no denying the Margarita's popularity. It often has a place as one of the most ordered drinks in the US, and from frozen to on the rocks offers endless flavor combinations. At the base level, a margarita is defined as a cocktail made with tequila and fruit juice, usually citrus but with the wide variety of flavors possible it could be any fruit juice.
The recipe below is for a traditional lime and tequila, on-the-rocks margarita. Salt rim is totally optional.
2 oz blano tequila
1 ½ oz lime juice
½ oz tripe sec
½ oz agave syrup
Take a rocks glass and run the lime wheel along the edge of the rim. Sprinkle some salt in a shallow dish and press the rim of the glass into the salt. Set the glass upright and to the side. Fill a shaker with ice and combine the tequila, lime juice, triple sec, and agave syrup. Pour in the shaken cocktail with ice from the shaker. Garnish with the lime wheel.
Hope these cocktails help you to celebrate! Happy Cinco de Mayo! Cheers!
Celebrating all that we raise, sip, guzzle, clink, drinks and most affectionately cheers with!