Much in the same manner of what occurs during St. Patrick’s Day celebrations and our non-Irish citizenry, people who aren’t necessarily Mexican love to commemorate Cinco de Mayo’s annual May 5 anniversary of Mexico’s victory over the Second French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, led by General Ignacio Zaragoza. Yay General Zaragoza. What that hard won bloody battle’s win has to do with margaritas or drag is anybody’s guess, but let’s have a good time on behalf of the General.
Here is PW’s Best of Cinco de Mayo 2023 events – food, fun and fury – all in one hot spot.
Sueno’s Cinco Block Party
From 2:00 to 8:00pm, outdoors, followed by an indoor party until Midnight, Philly’s Craft Concepts Group turn Samson at 12th Street into an all-day Mexican festival with Corona buckets, large frozen margaritas in pineapples, Street Corn, walking tacos, chicken kabobs and more. Free to attend, food and drink is pay-as-you-go-go.
Sueno, 114 S 12th Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19107
Move the Groove Vinyl Lover’s Happy Hour at Trestle Inn
Featuring “Five Sides” with community innovator DJ Michelle Freeman of Witty Gritty, Amplify Philly, Thee Glitterbombs and Girls Rock Philly, this passionate vinyl collector will spin five album sides from the 60s and 70s “that have a special place in her heart.” Here’s hoping that a Vicente Fernández record or two makes it into the list for Cinco de Mayo.
The Trestle Inn, 339 N 11th Street, 11th and Callowhill, Philadelphia, PA 19107-1307
Añejo Philly’s all day long party
From noon until 10 pm, Anejo in Northern Liberties hoists the frozen watermelon margaritas while DJ Sojo unveils the Latin dance hits. Añejo’s two new outdoor patios will also debut this day so you can Cinco christen them with margarita flights.
Añejo Philly, 1001 N. 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19123
Red Owl Tavern on Independence Mall
Historic Old City’s most modern American tavern welcomes three curated margaritas (Lead Bartender Christopher Devern’s Mango Mezcal, Passionfruit, Dragonfruit, and Classic) and a specialty menu with Barbacoa Quesadilla with pickled red onion, crema, and queso Oaxaca or Baja Fish Tacos with fried cod, cabbage slaw, radish, and adobo verde for lunch and dinner on May 5.
Red Owl Tavern, 433 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA
The Philadelphia Drag Mafia’s Drag Bingo at the Fainting Goat
Brittany Lynn’s team of dressy drag experts bring their Girl’s Night Out blend of male revue, live singing and burlesque to the burbs.
The Fainting Goat PA, 105 S MacDade Blvd, Glenolden, PA 19036-1751
Garces Trading Company at Cira Centre’s Cinco de Mayo
From lunch hour through to happy hour, Jose Garces’ post-Center City rendezvous offers a bespoke Craft Your Own Margarita Bar with Milagro Tequila – Blanco or Reposado – for Mexicali cocktails such as The Flavor: (Classic, Refreshing Cucumber, Spicy Jalapeno, Pineapple, Black Cherry), The Herbs (Cilantro, Basil, Rosemary, Mint) and/or The Rim (Salt, Sugar, Tajin Chile, No Rim). Hey, you’re the mixologist here – do a margarita your own way.
Garces Trading Company at Cira Centre, 2929 Arch Street, B, Philadelphia, PA 19104
Brewerytown Food Hall’s Cinco Party and Patio Grand Opening
The Beyond-the-Art-Museum area’s newest hot spot debuts its large scale, blue turf-lined outdoor patio with from 4:00pm to 10:00pm with beer pitcher specials, classic margaritas (check the West Philadelphia Born and Raise) and new menu items themed for Cinco de Mayo. Their new neighbors LOVE this commotion.
Brewerytown Food Hall, 1363 N. 31st Street, Philadelphia, PA 19121
El Camino Real’s All-Day Fiestapalooza Celebration
El Camino Real in Northern Liberties’ Fiestapalooza not only holds a costume contest for drinks (dress up like a margarita for one free margarita) welcomes guests to dine out on its foot-long 12-inch Monster Taco, Tuna Ceviche Tacos on Crispy Wontons and Fruity Pebble Tres Leches.
El Camino Real, 1040 N 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19123
The Sculpture Courtyard/Barn & Sculpture Studio indoor/outdoor Cinco de Mayo with Drink Culture
One of this city’s best kept secret event venues is, as it sounds, a gorgeous rarity of carved stone and curated greenery. And now, for Cinco de Mayo – DJs and drinks from their tequila bar and a BYOB option.
The Sculpture Courtyard/Barn & Sculpture Studio, 1717 N Hancock Street, Philadelphia, PA
GBU Good Bad Ugly in West Chester
On Friday night, West Chester’s favorite spaghetti western, underground dive bar will offer Margarita Boots for $15 all night. I have no idea wtf that means, but I’ll be there. With spurs on.
GBU Good Bad Ugly, 158 W Gay Street, West Chester PA 19380
HiBar season opening rooftop vibe/ Cinco de Mayo Sunset Soiree
The upper half of South Street gets a HiBar debut, its new skyline rooftop saloon, and an open bar with Generaciones Tequila.
HiBar, 1430 South Street, Philadelphia, PA
Patchwork X Alta Calidad Cinco de Mayo pop-up
Patchwork’s New American cuisine location on the second floor of Hyatt Centric Center City Philly gets in bed with inventive Brooklyn-based Mexican restaurant Alta Calidad for a limited Cinco de Mayo pop-up on Cinco de Thursday starting at 5pm. Patchwork’s exec chef Jonathan Dearden teams with Alta Calidad’s Chef Akhtar Nawab for new Mex-Am dishes such as Octopus with pork belly and confit potato pintxos, a Taco Flight with charred fish, chipotle mayonnaise, and mango and jicama salsa, Brisket Adobo with cucumber escabeche and salsa cruda, and Pea Shoots with black bean purée, crispy chickpeas, and habanero salsa.
Patchwork Restaurant, 1620 Chancellor Street, Philadelphia, PA