Dust off your cactus-festooned Margarita glasses because it’s time for Cinco de Mayo! But that doesn’t mean you should stoop to saccharine, slushy Margs or throat-burning tequila shots at your local bro pit. Instead, celebrate Cinco with one of these drinks in hand. And maybe go read the Wiki page on Cinco de Mayo while you’re at it so you understand precisely what you’re celebrating. (Hint: It has nothing to do with guacamole).
10 Great Drinks for Your Cinco de Mayo Fiesta
Cinco de Mayo marks the Battle of Puebla between Mexican and French forces, but the two countries come together in perfect harmony in this cocktail. Mexican tequila and French-styled elderflower and grapefruit liqueurs are utterly refreshing in this spritz.
Marathon Cinco de Mayo celebrations can wear on the body as the sun inches across the sky. Stay fresh and breezy with this low-ABV take on the traditional Paloma. The only booze is grapefruit beer, which gets fruity backup from grapefruit oleo saccharum syrup and grapefruit soda to boot.
Fresh Grapefruit Juice
Torn between refreshing, tart Margaritas and cool Mexican brews? Don’t pick. The Mexican Bulldog is an utterly simple duet of an upturned Corona dunked into a slushy Margarita. Skip the shooters of swill tequila and get your kicks flipping bottles into your cocktails instead.
The El Diablo is more tiki than true Mexican cocktail, but we’re still fans of the way ginger beer, crème de cassis and lime combine with reposado tequila. The taste is worth the risk of inauthenticity—heck, it’s worth the risk of el diablo.
Crème de cassis
A holiday in celebration of a bloody battle deserves a bloody good drink. This savory, salty, jalapeño-infused cocktail will keep you wide awake as the festivities roll into the late night, but it’s just as good the morning after a riotous fiesta.
Put some springtime in your celebratory cocktail with a drink pulled straight from the earth, like this spicy, carrot juice-spiked Margarita. With chile-infused tequila and chile liqueur, it’ll definitely add some pep to your celebration while getting you amped for spring.
As your Cinco de Mayo party winds down, sweeter cravings may take over. Don’t reach for the Ben & Jerry's, but instead stay on theme with some horchata ice cream. While you’d be forgiven for eating Tillamook’s Cinnamon Horchata ice cream straight from the pint, consider going the extra mile with a boozy horchata milk punch. It’s the sweetest way to end an excellent shindig.
Horchata Ice Cream
Your avocados are good for more than just guacamole and avocado toast. Admittedly, the initial thought of putting avocado in a cocktail is off-putting. But when done right, it works. The Avocado Margarita is a creamy and savory tequila cocktail that’s blended with ice and perfect for celebrating on a hot day. Think of it as a semi-savory Piña Colada.
Your Cinco de Mayo drinking has to start somewhere, and it may as well be with a Michelada. Pace yourself with a few of these bad boys, and you’re guaranteed to have a good time. The easily customizable beer and hot sauce drink is one that you can continue sipping all day long.
Keep it simple with a clean cocktail that puts mezcal front and center. The Agua Sage—a mix of sage water, lemon juice, agave syrup and mezcal—is an ideal aperitif to sip before diving into all of the food you’re inevitably going to overeat. Then, once you do that, have another Agua Sage as a digestif.