Your most ‘authentic’ Cinco de Mayo in the Miami Valley
By Nicole Wroten
To celebrate Cinco de Mayo, I would first like to provide a little history lesson. A lot of people who go out for margaritas and Mexican food on Cinco de Mayo (or as some refer to it, “Cinco de Drinko”) confuse it as Mexican Independence Day, which is really celebrated on September 16. Dieciséis de Septiembre just doesn’t have the same ring to it, but what Cinco de Mayo is observed to commemorate is the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.
Cinco de Mayo is widely celebrated in the United States, but in Mexico, it is really only celebrated in the state of Puebla, where the battle occurred. But nonetheless, it is a great way for Americans to celebrate the rich cultural heritage of our friends to the South and appreciate all the things they’ve shared with us. Their heritage, their culture, their language, and my favorite, their delicious food and drink.
It’s safe to say that I consider myself a margarita and Mexican food aficionado. Growing up in south Texas, you kind of don’t have a choice (not like I would choose NOT to) but to eat Mexican food at least once a week and taste your first margarita by age three.
I firmly believe that a good margarita is hard to come by and I am very particular about tequila and my margarita’s alcohol content. Call me a lush, fine. Because I don’t care when it comes to margaritas. I have scoured the Miami Valley for the perfect margarita. I have my favorite, yet I have yet to find my margarita soul mate.
Here is what I recommend doing this afternoon to commemorate:
Did you see today’s Groupon deal this morning? For $7, you get $14 worth of authentic Mexican fare at Taqueria Mixteca. In my “professional” opinion, Taqueria Mixteca has the most authentic Mexican food in Dayton, hands down. Their tacos are the most delectable ratio of corn tortilla to meat to onion and cilantro. I’ve tried to recreate them several times in my own kitchen to no avail. But alas, I just have to hop down to Third Street to get my fix. Try the chorizo. Ugh, so yummy, food coma.
My only complaint about this true foodie establishment is that they do not have a liquor license and thus do not serve my dear margaritas. One day maybe. A girl can dream can’t she? Because if their margaritas are as authentic as their food, look out.
I’ve also heard that Taco Loco is really good. I haven’t been yet, has anyone?
If you can even get out of your chair with that food baby in your belly, here comes the drinking part. Here are my top 3 recommendations (in order) to my favorite margaritas in town:
Elsa’s. Bad Juan on the rocks (or sometimes with a splash of frozen strawberry).
I feel like Elsa’s doesn’t necessarily have the best margarita, but at least you get what you’re paying for. Any place that won’t serve you more than three is good in my book.
Carmel’s. Bobarita on the rocks.
When it is made right, this margarita is not half bad. Sometimes they are made a little on the sweet side, but can still be pretty good. Besides, any place that has a patio like that, I am in.
Abuelo’s. Agave Margarita.
I generally try to steer clear of chains, but we went here not too long ago for a birthday party and waited at the bar for our table. The bartender, whom I was pretty sure was too young to be serving us, recommended the Agave. I have to say, it wasn’t too bad. Not too sweet, good tequila, but a little on the pricey side for my “bang for your buck” margarita rule.
Hope these few tips persuade you in the most “authentic” way possible for Cinco de Mayo. Trust me, I’m a Texan.
Reach DCP Editor Nicole Wroten at firstname.lastname@example.org.