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Greenpoint darling Threes Brewing is pulling out all the stops for Cinco de Mayo and Derby day. Don your finest chapeau and dance to mariachi music while sipping from a sampling of “Mexitucky” cocktails (think mint margaritas and mezcal juleps). Munch on cemitas and taco specials from the Meat Hook, shimmy to live Latin beats by Names You Can Trust, and catch the Run for the Roses on a live broadcast.
Cost: Free to enter, drinks are $13
Alex Stupak’s elevated Mexican fare earned him instant culinary fame in NYC, so it’s only right that you spend Cinco de Mayo at his flagship. With your ticket, you’ll gain access to unlimited premium cocktails (opt for the specialty Patron margaritas, obviously) and a cornucopia of Stupak’s famed bites. Feast on pastrami and mustard seed tacos, crispy pork belly tostadas, and shrimp ceviche with green papaya while following the cardinal rule of open bars: pace yourself to the finish.
Cost: Tickets are $95
You know the whole rooftop shtick: those sweeping skyline views, that sweet spring breeze. Make your way to PHD and soak it all in with an open tequila bar. Libations are only bottomless from 2-3pm, so you’ll have precisely one hour to pound margaritas and palomas (or sip the stuff straight) between complimentary bites by Bodega Negra.
Cost: Tickets start at $75
Modeled after a traditional, casual Mexican luncheonette, La Loncheria slings authentic tortas, tacos, tacos, and agave-based spirits all day long. On the 5th, the place will play tribute to the Battle of Puebla with specialty food and drink items sourced from the region, one of the world’s richest for food. Expect a twist on the standard negroni made with Mezcales de Leyendas, and Pueblan ancho reyes, and a Pueblan cemita with marinated dry-aged beef over housemade pan de agua, among other tasty treats.
Cost: Entry is free, specialty cocktails are $14
Lower East Side
Celebrate Cinco -- German-style! For a deeply inauthentic (but nonetheless festive) celebration, hit Loreley Beer Garden. All night long, they’re slinging $9 frozen margaritas, $15 liter steins, and no-fuss nachos.
Cost: Frozen margs are $9; liter steins are $15
With over 1,000 carefully selected bottles, this is the fun kind of library. In a salute to the marriage of Drinko de Mayo and Derby day, prodigious bartenders will shake up a spread of cocktails cleverly melding whiskey and tequila. Sip a jalapeño rye margarita or an Oaxaca old fashioned, and marvel at the volume of bottles on display.
Cost: Cocktails start at $14
HoY’s Cinco de Mayo fiesta is actually a celebration of all cultures. Expect to see “Russian ribbon dancers,” “German milk maids,” “Turkish wrestlers,” and “drums from everywhere.” Keep in mind: the venue promising “thick accents,” and “White Trash trailer park BBQ” asks that you not “appropriate someone else’s culture.”
Cost: Tickets start at $25
Lower East Side
Keep it simple at Mr. Purple with two-for-one Casamigos margaritas and mezcal on the rocks all night long. Lounge outdoors on the sleek roof deck while the weather permits, and when the late-night chill sets in, gaze at the panoramic skyline from behind floor-to-ceiling windows. It’ll all be that much more beautiful when the tequila takes hold.
Cost: Entry is free, margs are $16
On Cinco de Mayo, along with the staples, the menu will feature specials like black bean croquettes with pico de gallo, and slow-roasted pork tacos with radish and onion. Claim a table and start in on discounted frozen margaritas and Espolon shots with Tecate when the Derby celebrations die down around 8pm.
Cost: Margaritas are $6, beer-and-shot deals are $8
This Bib Gourmand Mexican eatery slings creative market driven Mexican fare in the shadow of the Brooklyn Bridge -- so expect extraordinary al fresco views. Year-round, the menu includes hand-pressed heirloom corn tortillas loaded with lengua, quick-roasted boat scallops, and tomato-chipotle braised amish chicken. On Cinco de Mayo, the bar steals the show, with over 50 agave-based spirits on offer.
Cost: $10 margaritas
Arlo SoHo will open its revamped rooftop space to the public for an all-day fiesta on Cinco de Mayo. Alongside the standard mix of tacos and margs on offer just about everywhere, you’ll find a Don Julio pop-up station with a build-your-own-margarita bar. Keep it classic, or add a mango twist, and remember: salt or bust.
Cost: Build your own margs are $12, standard margs are $10