Cinco de Mayo is Spanish for “the fifth of May.” The date is observed in the United States and in Mexico as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride.

The holiday is more than margaritas and guacamole (not that we can’t celebrate those, too) – and commemorates the Mexican army’s victory over French forces in the state of Puebla in 1862.


Cinco de Mayo has its roots in the French occupation of Mexico, which took place in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War of 1846-48 and the Mexican Civil War of 1858. Due to the wars, the Mexican Treasury was nearly bankrupt, and could not repay any foreign debts. The French government sent troops to collect what was theirs, but on May 5, 1862, the Mexican army defeated the French forces – boosting morale for the entire country.


  • Cinco de Mayo is not the same as Mexican Independence Day – that is held on September 16.
  • In Mexico, most of the Cinco de Mayo celebrations that take place occur in the town of Puebla – where the historic battle took place.
  • Mariachi is a form of folk music from Mexico, and is a popular part of Cinco de Mayo celebrations in the United States and Mexico. The name “mariachi” can refer to the type of music, the band, or a single musician.

Celebrating Suggestions

    • If appropriate, decorate your bar or restaurant, and offer specials on food and beverages for guests – host a Cinco de Mayo party!
    • Own a restaurant or bar? Host a tequila tasting!
    • Did you know that tequila and agave are restorative (and ancient) holistic remedies? See if you can incorporate these ingredients into your spa treatments for May!
    • If your neighborhood has a strong Mexican community, see if there are events you can become involved in – either by donating time, services or products.

Check out some celebration-worthy promotions we scouted out below! You’ll notice they all have one thing in common… it starts with a T and usually ends with a headache.

Tequila Takes The Back Seat

Silverado Cooking School in Napa Valley, California is hosting a Cinco De Mayo cooking class, where students can learn to make authentic Mexican cuisine, such as street corn and tamales with red sauce.

Tequila Takes The Front Seat

Wildfire Restaurant in McLean, Virginia is inviting guests to elevate their tequila tastebuds with a special tequila dinner. Each course will be perfectly paired with a different Don Julio tequila.

Tequila for Breakfast

Zengo in Washington, D.C. will host a Bottomless Brunch in honor of Cinco de Mayo. Keep your pants on, it just means that drinks are all you can drink until 2:30.

Tequila On The Move

A Chicago hospitality company will host it’s second annual “Cinco de Mayo Trolley Crawl” to three participating bars on Saturday night. The free trolley will be stocked with Mexican beers and serve until midnight, and each bar on the stop will have Cinco de Mayo specials!

Tequila as Therapy

No, not in the sense that you drown your sorrows in a 3rd margarita. The Four Seasons in Beverly Hills has put together a special spa package that highlights the healing and restorative properties of tequila and sage. Plus, you get a free margarita after your treatment. Not too shabby!

Check out our Marketing Holiday Calendar for more dates to celebrate!