Photo: krakatoa, Flickr
Many Americans wrongly think that Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of Mexican Independence Day -- it's really just a fiesta in honor of one battle that happened years later in 1862. This year marks Mexico's bicentennial celebration of the actual independence on September 16, 1810. Here at Casa Cóctel in Baja California Sur, Mexican flags are everywhere as we gear up for this massive Mexican celebration. The iconic red, white and green of the flags even translates to the cocktail we're serving: Banderita, meaning "little flag," consists of 3 shots -- tequila, lime juice, and sangrita -- lined up next to each other to resemble the colors of the Mexican flag.
If you can't make it over to the Mexican side of the California border, perhaps you can check out The Polished Palate's Spirits of Mexico Festival in San Diego this week from September 15-19. It's a huge gathering of distillers, writers, bartenders, and other industry folks to celebrate agave-based spirits such as tequila and mezcal, as well as agave beer, liqueurs, and even sotol [pronounced soh-TOLL], a less common Mexican spirit made from a plant that grows wild in the northern state of Chihuahua.
Besides the chance to taste more spirits than your body can possibly handle, the Festival will also feature seminars on spirits and cocktails and include the finals of a sangrita competition. If hopping in a plane just isn't in the cards, do some armchair travel via the list of spirits that won silver and golds in the Spirits of Mexico tasting competition.
For more information about Hispanic Heritage Month, visit AOL Celebra.