In the past few years, Cinco de Mayo has been thoroughly co-opted as an American drinking holiday. Whether or not you agree with this appropriation, a lot of people around you will be guzzling margaritas and tasting tacos across the city this Thursday, May 5. Depending on your view, here’s where in the Bay Area you can either celebrate along with them — or avoid the masses.
What: $8 margaritas and special tacos, with over 100 varieties of tequila and mezcal.
When: Thursday, May 5
Where: The Presidio, 50 Moraga Ave., San Francisco
What: This Roman restaurant is going Mexican with live music, a DJ, a food truck and drink specials.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 4 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
Where: 582 Washington St., San Francisco
Bar San Pancho-Tacolicious-Mosto Bar Crawl
What: Tacolicious is hosting a mini Mission cocktail crawl; here’s how it works: Buy a drink at both Tacolicious and Mosto and be rewarded with a free margarita at Bar San Pancho three blocks away.
When: Thursday, May 5 starting at Tacolicious at 11:30 a.m. Bar San Pancho closes at 2 a.m.
Where: Tacolicious at 741 Valencia St.; Mosto at 741 Valencia St.; Bar San Pancho at 3198 16th St.
California Academy of Sciences
What: The popular nightlife series is featuring mezcal all evening with seminars, mixology demos, tastings and more for $15.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: Golden Gate Park, 55 Music Concourse Dr., San Francisco
What: Sous chef Soledad Castillo has created a four-course Mexican-Spanish fusion menu with dishes like rose-braise duck gorditas. See the full $55 menu here and reserve a table.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: 2272 Market St., San Francisco
Cinco de Mayo Festival
What: The Mission Neighborhood Centers’ 12th annual Cinco de Mayo celebration has no alcohol, but there are mariachi, salsa, and Latin hip hop performers, over 65 vendors with food, art, crafts, and a dedicated kid’s zone with a musical petting zoo, magic tricks, a clown, and more. See the full lineup of entertainment and activities here.
When: Saturday, May 7 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Where: Valencia Street between 21st and 24th Streets
The Clift Hotel
What: Buying one cocktail gets you six tacos that you will then judge to choose a winner.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Where: 495 Geary St., San Francisco
What: Oaxacan street corn (grilled over coals and topped with chipotle aioli, cotija cheese, and cilantro) will return to the menu for cinco de Mayo. Plus, Comal has instated $10 bowls of pozole with a can of Tecate after 9 p.m. every night.
When: Wednesday, May 4 through the summer
Where: 2020 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley
What: Several dish specials (Dungeness crab and yellowfin tuna tacos, habanero chicken wings, and more) have been added to the menu, in addition to a three-drink margarita tasting flight for $18.
When: Sunday, May 1 through Thursday, May 5
Where: 739 Bridgeway, Sausalito
What: Cosecha is proudly taking Cinco de Mayo back to what the holiday is actually intended to be: a celebration of Mexico’s victory over France in the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Chef Dominica Rice-Cisneros will be preparing "food grown and raised by small farmers [and] harvested with love." There will also be a mezcal pairing and music.
When: Thursday, may 5 from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: 907 Washington St., Oakland
What: Dirty Water is reopening its outdoor dining area and offering tequila and mezcal flights.
When: Thursday May 5
Where: 1355 Market St., San Francisco
What: Chef James Syhabout paired new dishes with Cabo Wabo and Espolon tequilas, like a scallop ceviche and grilled chicken with pineapple vinaigrette. See the full menu here and buy tickets to the three-course $38 dinner here.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: 95 Linden St., Oakland
Half Moon Bay Brewing Company
What: Drink specials and live music, plus a draft habañero pilsner.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the bar
Where: 390 Capistrano Rd., Half Moon Bay
What: $10 gets you a Modelo and a shot of tequila. Margaritas are $7 and a bottle of Modelo is $5.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 6:30 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Where: 401 Taylor St., San Francisco
What: Enjoy drink and food specials with a DJ.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Where: 679 Sutter St., San Francisco
What: $22 tostada flatbread (smoked and grilled shrimp, charred lime aioli, onion, cilantro and a refried rancho gordo bean and house miso dip) and a $10 classic frozen margarita.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 4 p.m. to close
Where: 813 Main St., Napa
What: "Festive" cocktails, tacos, punch bowls, and a mariachi quartet.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: 662 Mission St., San Francisco
What: SoMa StrEat Food Park is going Mexican with all-taco offerings from eight trucks, a Mexican wrestling showcase at 12:30 p.m., a DJ from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., lots of margaritas, sangria, beer, micheladas, and more. See the full lineup and buy tickets here.
When: Saturday, May 7 from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: SoMa StrEat Food Park, 428 11th St., San Francisco
What: La Toque is transforming into El Toque with a five-course menu of family recipes from some kitchen staff who hail from Mexico. Dishes on the $75 menu include chile relleno, tacos, duck confit with mole, and more. A portion of proceeds will benefit Napa’s Puertas Abiertas Community Center. Call to reserve.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Where: The Westin Verasa Napa, 1314 McKinstry St., Napa
What: Tropisueno takes over the alley for its annual party with a live band, DJ, drink and food specials, and more.
When: Thursday, May 5 from 1 p.m. to close
Where: 75 Yerba Buena Ln., San Francisco
Uno Dos Tacos
What: All day happy hour with $6.75 margaritas, $5 sangria, $4 draft beer and more. Food includes $5 tostaditas, flautas, gorditas, and quesadillas, and more.
When: Monday, May 2 through Friday, May 6 from 10:30 a.m. to close
Where: 595 Market St., San Francisco