The Man Cave: Cinco De Mayo…a GRINGO Celebration!

Posted on May 3 2014 - 8:37am by Chris Meehan

…Try a fiesta with Fish Tacos!

Question of the day – What is Cinco de Mayo?

 Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for “fifth of May”) is NOT Mexico’s Independence Day as so many of us non-Hispanics think. That day is Fiestas Patrias, celebrated on September 16 each year, and is by far their most important national public holiday.

Cinco De Mayo Food Sign

Cinco de Mayo IS a day of celebration of Mexican heritage and pride, and is surprisingly…a much bigger holiday in the U.S. than in Mexico.

It originated with Mexican-American communities in the American west (primarily California) as a way to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy when Mexican troops surprisingly and decisively crushed a much larger and better equipped French force at the Battle of Puebla, Mexico on May 5, 1862.  Californian Hispanics were over-joyed and continued on with an annual celebration the next year, while in Mexico the date has never really been a major happening.

With the growing Hispanic population in the States, in the 1980’s U.S. Beer companies started capitalizing on the growing popularity of Cinco de Mayo, and really started making it a MAJOR U.S. day to well…….EVERYBODY PARTY! Like St. Patrick’s Day to some degree, it’s become fun to note the day and go GRINGO!

Straw Mexican Sombrero On White Background

Our Cinco de Mayo Events –

We at 3P know both Cinco de Mayo and Fiestas Patrias very well.  Over the years, we’ve produced approximately sixteen (16) very large outdoor Hispanic festival events for either of these holidays, with the largest one having an attendance of over 30,000 attendees. Lot’s of fun and Cervesa’s (beer), delicious Hispanic food and lively music!

Cinco de Mayo in the U.S. is now is all about going out and having fun, and just about any bar or restaurant is going to get heavily into the part on May 5, and with that being a Monday this year, they’ll be a great Gringo fiesta’s happening Friday night, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday night too!

Having your own Cinco de Mayo themed event?


3P Event Basics from Brenda and Jessi:  Simple centerpiece ideas are sombreros, pinatas, festive colored chips and salsa… Don’t forget the Mexican colors of the day for décor: Red, white and green! We’ll be pulling solid colored green and red items such as napkins, linens, and candles out of our Christmas Décor Box.

Back to the Cave: We’ll be doing one of our favorite Mexican dinners over that weekend – FISH TACOS! (plus all the side dishes and of course Margarita’s and Mexican Beer (we like Corona’s and Dos Equis!)

If you haven’t had them, Fish Tacos are very big in California and Mexico’s coastal communities and resorts.  If you like fish, Fish Tacos are great (and a nice break different from the traditional meat/chicken fillings.) 


For fish, we like using Mahi-Mahi the most.  It’s what we get served in Mexico most often and really enjoy it.  You can pretty much use any white fish as well, including Tilapia….


You’ll also need the basics:

  •  Taco Shells or Corn Tortillas (available in any major food store (or Hispanic market)
  •  Shredded ice-berg lettuce or shredded cabbage
  •  Sliced tomatos
  •  Avocado, sliced
  •  Shredded Cheddar cheese, (or Mexican shredded cheese)
  •  Chopped white onion (also an option)
  •  Salsa and Chips
  •  We like to have refried beans as a side dish  (available in any major food store) I always doctor this up with a pat or two of butter, some salt, and little hot Sauce; all this adds a lot more flavor.fish2

You can grill the fish or simply sauté it until done (as it takes only minutes to cook, be careful not to overcook)  then break the fish into bite size pieces, put it all into in a serving bowl and start building your Taco!

If you’d like a little more food with the Taco’s, grilling some Carne Asada is also extremely tasty and VERY easy.  (Available in most major food stores, and certainly in a Hispanic market which would be the best place to buy it if you can.)  Also, Spanish Rice is available in any store and goes with a larger meal plan.


3P Wine Pairing suggestions-

We love to try new things.  The Tempranillo (Temp-ra-knee-oh) grape is the dominant grape varietal in Spain’s Rioja red wines.  These red’s are great with this type dinner, and are not expensive and kinda keep with the Spanish theme .

If you like white, Chardonnay also works, or a Chilean white.

Adios, and have fun – Gringo’s!

(Also, click here for Tony’s “World Famous” Guacamole Recipe!)

1 Comment so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Tania Atack May 4, 2014 at 4:50 pm -

    Being that my nick name is Margarita Babe I am all over all the Cinco de Mayo Celebrations!!! I wish I was there to share your wonderful ViVA MEJICO food and celebration.
    But, you have to know that our best Margarita maker is here in Canada….Can you imagine. (Brian)
    Enjoy amigos and yes, I will enjoy your celebrations and of course a Margarita!!!!! Hugs. Tania