Think Cinco de Mayo in Los Angeles is like any other holiday? Think again—in this town, the fifth of May is a citywide celebration. From East LA to Santa Monica, families and singles alike join the all-day fiesta (and yes, we're aware that it's not Mexican Independence Day, and no, we don't usually need an excuse to order margaritas). Here's your guide to Cinco de Mayo events, things to do, where to eat and what to drink, and if you just can't handle the crowds at your favorite Mexican restaurants, might we suggest partying at an Irish pub instead? It can be just as fun and just as drunken, with fewer sombrero collisions. Salud!
What is Cinco de Mayo? Cinco de Mayo is a holiday that celebrates an against-the-odds and victorious battle the Mexican army won over the French, who invaded the east coast of Mexico near Veracruz in 1861 and pushed toward Mexico City, the capitol. The battle took place on May 5, 1862 near the town of Puebla.
How to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in Los Angeles
LA's best Cinco de Mayo specials
Tap into your Mexican pride—or, you know, your love of tequila—with these Cinco de Mayo specials.
The best bars in Los Angeles for tequila and mezcal
Whether you like it mixed into a cocktail or as a straight-up shot, here's where to get your tequila and mezcal fix.
5 Mexican craft beers you should try
Head to your favorite Mexican restaurant or beer bar—we'll show you where—and give these pioneer cervezas a try.
Best Mexican restaurants in LA
Our favorite places for Mexican food, from fancy to hole-in-the-wall musts.
The 10 best margaritas in Los Angeles
From brunch to happy hour, we found the best bars in the city for a top-notch margarita.
The best fish tacos in Los Angeles
Here are our top ten favorite spots for fish tacos in LA.