Everyone’s favorite Mexican-inspired holiday, Cinco de Mayo is tomorrow. The celebration, which is sometimes mistaken for being Mexico’s Independence Day, is a sensational excuse to grab some friends and grub on some tacos and guacamole. Wondering where to raise that margarita glass and toast to the fifth of Mayo? Here are the hautest happenings around the San Francisco Bay Area.
Up in Napa at the renowned French restaurant La Toque, chef Ken Frank is hosting a special one-night only event in which he’s renaming the establishment El Toque. Frank will be serving up a five-course authentic Mexican tasting menu with dishes that come from his Hispanic staff members’ family recipes. There’s duck confit with mole, chips with a variety of salsas, coctel de mariscos, and a tres leches sundae. A portion of the proceeds from the evening will be donated to the Puertas Abiertas Community Center in Napa – an organization that promotes the well being of Latinos in the region.
Over in the East Bay, at the Hotel Shattuck’s Five restaurant, the chef has paired up with the team behind Berkeley-based Tres Agaves tequila. This intimate Cinco de Mayo soirée begins at 6:00 pm with a Tequila Talk with Tres Agave’s founder, Barry Angus. The talk is followed by a five-course meal and tequila pairing. Some of the delicious items the chef is whipping up? Tortas ahogadas with braised pork and spicy tomato sauce and traditional chicken mole? Rico!
In SOMA at the recently opened El Capitan, chef Mark Furr is throwing the Ultimate Taco Tuesday fiesta. He’s making fry bread tacos, which are sometimes known as Indian tacos or Navajo tacos and have a base of flat deep-fried dough. There will also be ceviche, Mexican street corn, and piles and piles of suckling pig that is being roasted especially for Cinco de Mayo. The Capitan team welcomes groups and also offers plenty of local beers, wine, and carafes of a housemade sangria.
In Saulsalito Copita is celebrating it’s 3rd birthday. The Mexican restuarant from Joanne Weir is plating up special lobster tacos along with all the favorites from their traditional menu. There’s a variety of ceviches, Mexico city style quesadillas filled with potatoes and green chorizo, and seared mahi fish tacos. The bartenders are shaking up a Margaritas tasting flight that includes three different types of marg: the classic with fresh lime juice, another with strawberry rhubarb puree, and a third with spicy tequila and grapefruit juice.
On Market Street in SF, Hecho is throwing a Mariachi party with a rocking live band. There will be plenty of drink specials, especially for margaritas, to pair with their chef’s delectable Mexican cuisine. There’s queso made with aged cheddar and goat cheese, albondigas in spicy tomato sauce, four different types of quesadillas. Pull up a chair, grab a pitcher, and say, “salud” to Cinco de Drinko.