Whether it serves as a celebration of rich cultural tradition or an excuse to drink too many margaritas on a weeknight, Cinco de Mayo is an extremely popular holiday for Bay Area locals. We've rounded up 15 special parties, events, and drink deals worth checking out on the big day, ranging from all-day happy hours to elaborate multi-course Mexican feasts. ¡Viva Mexico!Read More
Prepare For Taco Overload at These 15 SF Cinco de Mayo Celebrations
From high-end dinners to cheap margaritas, here's where to celebrate.
Calavera Pop-Up at Lungomare
New Oakland Mexican restaurant Calavera is still in the works, but its future chef, Christian Irabien, is previewing the menu at a Cinco de Mayo pop-up at sister restaurant Lungomare. Expect a la carte dishes like bistec asado and coctel de camaron, alongside intriguing cocktails like a truffled mezcal old fashioned. The pop-up takes place Tuesday, May 5 from 5:30-10:00 p.m. Call for reservations.
Canela Bistro Bar
Canela's sous chef, Soledad Castillo, will be cooking a special Cinco de Mayo menu for $39. The menu is inspired by Castillo's hometown of Guanajuato, Mexico, with dishes like shrimp and fish ceviche, mole poblano with chicken and handmade tortillas.
Cinco de Mayo Festival
For those seeking a less drunken option, the official Cinco de Mayo Festival of SF is less of a booze-fueled rampage and more of an alcohol-free, family-friendly celebration. It showcases Mexican and Latin American art, food, dance and culture on Valencia (between 21st and 24th St.). The celebration takes place Saturday, May 2 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
This Cinco de Mayo marks a special day for Comal, as it celebrates both the holiday and its third anniversary. Head over for a traditional Oaxacan snack of memelas with chapulines (fried masa cakes with grasshoppers), alongside a special cocktail that includes spiced rum, rhubarb-infused mezcal, lemon, green apple, coriand and passion fruit tea. The back patio will also be open for celebrating and chilling to an all-Mexican playlist from DJ Jose Ruiz.
Copita Tequileria y Comida
Copita's multi-purpose fiesta will celebrate its third birthday as well as the Cinco holiday, with discounted lobster tacos, margarita flights and more from May 1-5. On Sunday, May 3, the birthday bash will include fire-roasted ancho chile adobo porchetta and a mariachi band from 5-8 p.m.
The SoMa newcomer will be throwing an Ultimate Taco Tuesday party to celebrate the holiday, with fry bread tacos, ceviche, Mexican street corn and a whole suckling pig. Grab a ticket ($55 for two or $110 for four), order up a carafe of sangria, and catch the Giants game on their patio.
El Techo de Lolinda
Snag a much-coveted spot on Lolinda's rooftop for Cinco de Mayo, with pitchers of margaritas and a special selection of shot-and-a-beer options like the refreshing Amiga de Oaxaca, with mezcal, a coconut-green tea sangrita back and a Modelo Especial ($12).
HECHO is warming up for the big day by offering a series of tequila tastings on Cinco de Mayo Eve (otherwise known as May 4). Stop by for a Mariachi party with mucho drink specials on Tuesday, May 5.
La Toque Restaurant
While French-influenced La Toque isn't typically known for its Mexican cuisine, this year's Cinco de Mayo will transform the restaurant into "El Toque," complete with a five-course Mexican menu. The meal will feature dishes based on the family recipes of La Toque's kitchen team, including a coctel de mariscos, tamales, tacos and duck confit with mole. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Puertas Abiertas Community Center in Napa, which supports Latinos to inspire and achieve healthy living, self-sufficiency, and opportunities for leadership and community engagement. The menu will be available May 5 from 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Forget to order your booze-filled piñata for the upcoming Cinco de Mayo festivities? Minibar, described as "uber for booze," is offering same-day deliveries of donkey-shaped piñatas filled with ten mini-bottles of booze ($25).
The cocktail wizards of the Western division United States Bartenders Guild are throwing an agave showdown on Cinco, with nine bartenders from as far afield as Hawaii and Seattle competing for the crown. The $20 admission benefits La Cocina and the Tequila Interchange Project, and includes a live cumbia DJ and unlimited cocktail samples.
Novela isn't messing around this May 5. They've enlisted El Tonayense's taco truck from 6-9 p.m. to provide a delightful accompaniment to tequila punch, margarita sno-cones and other festive beverages.
At Oakland's gaming behemoth plank, Cinco de Mayo revelers can enjoy a Tacos and Tequila event filled with beer, margaritas and multiple taco stations. And naturally, a Mariachi band will be present to provide background music for games of bocce.
If you're looking for a quick exit from the office to your Cinco festivities, look no further than FiDi-adjacent Aventine, which will be getting the party started in its side alley at 4 p.m. Expect a DJ, taco trucks, and drink specials.
Uno Dos Tacos
Happy hour goes all day long at Uno Dos Tacos on May 5, in honor of America's favorite Mexican holiday. Discounted taco platters, margarita pitchers, and buckets of beer will abound.