May 04, 2023
Cinco de Mayo is quickly approaching, and since it falls on a Friday this year, there are sure to be plenty of margarita-soaked celebrations across Philadelphia.
While it's commonly misunderstood as Mexican Independence Day, Cinco de Mayo actually honors the the anniversary of Mexico's victory over the French empire during the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Although the United States did not play a role in the conflict, Americans see the day as a celebration of Mexican culture, complete with music, parades, dancing and plenty of food.
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To celebrate its fifth anniversary in Center City, Central American eatery El Merkury will give away 555 stuffed or mini-looped churros to the first batch of customers at the restaurant on Friday, May 5. The restaurant will have its full menu available all day in addition to a birthday fiesta from 6 to 8 p.m. with music curated by DJ Dre Ovalle. Three lucky customers will receive a $55 El Merkury gift card by participating in an Instagram sweepstakes.
Many other restaurants in the city will be hosting Cinco de Mayo festivities. Here is just a sampling of what's happening this Friday.
Center City Mexican restaurant Sueño is going all out for Cinco de Mayo with an all-day block party that will shut down the 1200 block of Sansom Street starting at 2 p.m. on Friday. DJ Santino will spin records outside until 8 p.m., when the party will be brought inside until midnight. Guests can enjoy drink specials like $9 house margaritas, $30 buckets of Corona, $19 frozen pineapple margarita pitchers and $17 frozen palm tree margarita pitchers. Those looking to eat can grab $7 street corn, $9 walking tacos, $9 chicken kebabs and an $18 pineapple bowl with chicken, rice, habanero corn salad and beans.
Location: 114 S. 12th St.
This Northern Liberties bar and restaurant is celebrating Cinco de Mayo beginning at noon on Friday with deals on frozen watermelon margaritas, specialty cocktails and a limited-time menu. From 5 to 10 p.m., DJ Sojo will spin Latin music while guests mingle and try out $25 classic and $30 flavored margarita flights. Two new outdoor patios will debut on Friday, so those who can't make it to the Cinco de Mayo celebration can spend the weekend enjoying some mild spring weather.
Location: 1001 N. Second St.
El Camino Real in Northern Liberties is hosting Fiestapalooza on Cinco de Mayo with half-price margaritas and deals on appetizers from 5 to 7 p.m. Guests can grab frozen margs served in pineapples or try 12-inch monster tacos, tuna ceviche tacos on wontons, birria poutine and Fruity Pebble tres leches. Patrons who dress up like a margarita will also score a free drink.
Location: 1040 N. Second St.
Head over to Garces Trading Co. at the Cira Centre on Friday afternoon for a craft-your-own-margarita bar. For just $14, patrons can fill out a custom order card with their favorite Milagro Tequila, flavors, herbs and a sugar, salt or tajin rim to commemorate the annual holiday.
Location: 2929 Arch St.
Buena Onda, Chef Jose Garces' Baja-themed taqueria, started its Cinco de Mayo celebration on Monday with a full week of $3 tacos leading up to a weekend-long celebration. On Wednesday and Thursday, visitors can try chicken ropa vieja tacos and al pastor tacos before the big day on Friday with $15 taco samplers, $8 spicy margaritas and a $4 Baja-style lager at the restaurant's locations in Rittenhouse and Callowhill.
Locations: 114 S. 20th St. and 1901 Callowhill St.
Brewerytown Food Hall will debut its outdoor patio space as part of its Cinco de Mayo celebration on Friday. From 4 to 10 p.m., guests can enjoy specials on beer pitchers and specialty cocktails. Imbibers can grab $5 classic margaritas, $6 frozen margaritas and $4 tacos. The featured margarita, called the West Philadelphia Born and Raised, is $13 and is made with blueberry, triple sec, blanco tequila, lime and dark chocolate. The full menu will be available at more than 60 seats on outdoor picnic tables with table games and large cocktail pitchers to share.
Location: 1363 N. 31st St.
City Winery in the Fashion District is opening its patio on Cinco de Mayo with live music on Friday. Guests can try food specials, plenty of margaritas and glasses of sangria from the restaurant's expansive menu while listening to a Cinco de Mayo celebration DJ'ed by Rahsaan Lucas of AfroTaino, a Philly-based Afro-Latino arts and culture collective.
Location: 990 Filbert St.
Partiers can also head over to Xfinity Live! in the South Philly Sports Complex for a Cinco de Mayo celebration at PBR Philly. The free party is for people 21 and older and features line dancing, mechanical bull-riding and a chance to win a margarita machine. Guests can try out two signature cocktails during the fiesta — Margarita Boots that come with souvenir glasses and the Skrewed Up Margarita. VIP seating is available for an additional fee.
Location: 1100 Pattison Ave.