Cinco De Mayo 2022: Tampa's Best Mexican Cantinas To Celebrate

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TAMPA, FL — Officially, Cinco de Mayo is a holiday that celebrates the Mexican army’s May 5, 1862, victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War.

But for the majority of Americans, Cinco de Mayo is synonymous with margarita’s and spicy Mexican foods.

We asked Patch readers where their favorite places are to dip tortilla chips in queso and lick the salt off the rim of their margarita glass. Here’s what they said:

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Comer, beber y ser feliz!

Besito Mexican Restaurant at 205 Westshore Plaza will celebrate Cinco de Mayo from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. with live music from 5 to 10 p.m., a DJ, dancing, tequila drink specials, giveaways

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Don Julio’s Authentic Mexican Cuisine is hosting a double celebration. It just opened its newest restaurant this week in Tampa Palms, 16023 Tampa Palms Blvd., New Tampa, and will celebrate Cinco de Mayor at both the new Tampa Palms location and its popular West Tampa restaurant at 2808 E Bearss Ave., Tampa.

Green Lemon, 915 S Howard Ave., Tampa, ranked red hot on the Patch foodie meter, for such dishes as the Dang Quesadilla loaded with pico de gallo, queso fresco, black beans, corn, cheddar, queso blanco, cilantro and a choice of grilled or fried chicken, pulled pork, grilled shrimp, grilled steak or habanero beer. Green Lemon will celebrate Cinco de Mayo from 3 to 7 p.m. with taco, tequila and margarita specials.

With its newly opened restaurant in Temple Terrace, Mexican food fans can now choose from five Lolis Mexican Cravings locations at 8005 Benjamin Road, Tampa; 10011 W. Hillsborough Ave., Tampa; 3324 W Gandy Blvd., Tampa; 11401 N 56th St., Temple Terrace; and 1824 N Westshore Blvd., Tampa. Favorite menu items include authentic Mexican tacos, sopes, tortas, tamales and quesadillas with ribeye, shrimp, chorizo and pork in Mexican anchiote sauce.

Sal Y Mar Rooftop Bar, 3650 Midtown Drive, Tampa, will celebrate Cinco de Mayo and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s birthday. Everyone purchasing a Teremana Tequila cocktail will receive “Guac on the Rock,” free guacamole. Click here for the details. There will also be $22 Teremana Tequila flights, $4 chicken, fish or steak tacos, $6 house beers and 360-degree views of the Tampa and St. Petersburg skylines. The rooftop bar will celebrate Cinco de Mayo Thursday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.

For those who love both seafood and Mexican food, Miguel’s Mexican Seafood & Grill, 3035 W Kennedy Blvd., combines both in creative ways. Popular dishes include shrimp and cheese-stuffed jalapenos, lobster tacos, seafood enchiladas and chimichangas and Seafood el Mario, combining shrimp and jumbo scallops sauteed with pico de gallo and mushrooms served over rice with sour cream, guacomole and handmade corn tortillas.

Bartaco, 1601 W. Snow Ave., Tampa, will celebrate Cinco de Mayo from noon to midnight. Fill a corn tortilla or go low-carb and fill a bibb lettuce shell with spicy tempura-battered cod with chipotle slaw; spiced chicken verde with chile, herb marinade and aguacate salsa; seared chorizo with cilantro, smoky red chimichurri sauce; or roasted wild mushrooms with roasted poblano chile sauce and queso fresco.

Catrina’s Tacos and Tequila Bar, 1611 N. Howard Ave., Tampa, will celebrate Cinco de Mayo and its 10-year anniversary Thursday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. with DJ Diana Castillo spinning tunes from 6 to 10 p.m. Catrina’s features award-winning guacamole and the largest selection of tequila in the Tampa Bay area with more than 350 tequilas for creating hand-crafted cocktails.

Urban Cantina, 200 E Madison St., Tampa, will celebrate Cinco de Mayo with $5 shots and specialty tacos. Favorites include the Super Chimichanga stuffed with ranchero chicken, beans, cheese then topped with queso and guacamole and Urban Carnitas with braised pork pieces, guacamole salad and fresh-made corn tortillas.

Additionally, Busch Gardens will celebrate Cinco de Mayo Thursday through Sunday. The mariachi band, Mariachi Bravo, will perform at the Coke Canopy.

Concerts on the Festival Field will feature Latin musicians.

  • Friday, May 6: Latin Explosion: Selena, Santana and Gloria Estefan Tribute
  • Saturday, May 7: Jenny & The Mexicats
  • Sunday, May 8: Grupo Cañaveral De Humberto Pabón

And visitors can indulge in spicy margaritas with Milagro Reposada, lime sour, triple sec and jalapeno, and foods like Birria de Res Taco with onions, cilantro, lime and roasted tomatillo.

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