Here's a 15-second history lesson: Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for 5 May) marks the anniversary of the Battle of Puebla in 1862, in which Mexico's underdog army overran the occupying French (unfortunately for the natives, France won the second battle). Traditionally celebrated across parts of Mexico and much of the United States, Cinco de Mayo has also proven a hit among London's ever-expanding collection of Mexican and Tex-Mex bars and restaurants.
Below are some of the places running events and offering special deals this weekend. If you know of any more, let us know in the comments and we''ll add them in.
- El Burrito in Charlotte Place is holding a Cinco de Mayo party from 6pm on Friday night, with specialities including pozole, tostadas and tamales on offer.
- At their Oxford Circus branch Benito's Hat are also holding a Cinco Eve Fiesta Party on Friday, with free Mexican tapas all night long, a Casco Vieja tequila & Jarritos bar (grapefruit Jarrito + tequila makes a wonderful paloma, trust us), a DJ set and a "Tabasco challenge". Five quid on the door, including a free frozen margarita, but turn up wearing a sombrero or 'tash and you'll get in for free. More details here (PDF).
- If you want to finally move on from the Old El Paso fajita kit and bring some finesse to your Mexican cooking, then this course from native chef Sofia Larrinua-Craxton is the ticket. Sofia will show you her favourite street foods, including sopes and tostadas, and teach you how to classic dishes such as tinga poblana served with lime and coriander rice. The course costs £99 and is at Central Street Cookery School on Friday, 4th May
- Cantina Laredo are keeping things simple by offering margaritas made using La Herradura, a premium tequila, for £5.95 all this month. Print off this voucher (PDF) to claim yours.
- Mestizo restaurant on Hampstead Road near Euston is going all-out with a special Cinco de Mayo performance by Mariachi Mexteca on Saturday night. Bookings recommended: call 020 7387 4064.
- Barrio Norte in Islington are offering margaritas for £4 until 8pm on Saturday, and DJ Jim8Track will be spinning into the wee hours.
- Not strictly related to Cinco de Mayo, but Leather Lane market stalwart Daddy Donkey is currently offering a two-for-one deal for the whole of May, and if you work in the area (or even if you don't) it'd be foolish not to take them up on the offer.
Photo / Stephskimo