This post is sponsored by Beam Suntory Inc. / Sauza® Tequila*.
Happy Cinco de Mayo! Okay, well not officially. But with it’s arrival less than two weeks away, I thought I’d use this week to show you How To Celebrate Cinco de Mayo IBC-style.
In my eight years of blogging, I’ve never before shared Cinco de Mayo-related ideas, so I’m really excited to show you what I’ve created. Even more thrilling is that I’m partnering with Sauza® Tequila to bring you this celebratory collection. While I’m not a big straight tequila drinker, I do love me a good margarita. And since Sauza is the tequila for your margarita (plus it’s made with 100% Agave), I can totally get on board.
Today I’m going to walk you through some of the essentials for a Cinco de Mayo celebration. Then throughout the week I’ll share details about the recipes and projects I created to make my own fiesta. In other words, you’re going to want to check back all week. That’s not such a bad thing, right? You can always count me in for a week-long party.
What is Cinco de Mayo? No, it’s not just a day for us to enjoy delicious Mexican food and drink margaritas. Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Puebla and the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over the French force of Napoleon III on May 5, 1862. Unlike what many think, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s Independence Day which is celebrated on September 16. (A fun factoid for you to share while you’re sipping your margarita (made with Sauza® Tequila, of course!))
So, with the facts out of the way, let’s get into this party.
The idea behind this collaboration with my friends at Sauza® Tequila was to create my take on Cinco de Mayo – #MyKindofCinco So if you’re looking for a truly authentic celebration, this is not the place to get it. However, if you’re looking for some delicious recipes, inspired decor, and creative ideas in the spirit and celebration of Cinco de Mayo. I’m your guy!
Let me walk you through a few of the essentials for my kind of Cinco de Mayo Celebration.
Start with Color
Let’s start with the decorations. I always find it helpful to choose a color palette when you start your party planning. There are a lot of decisions that need to be made for a party. Having a color palette in mind will limit some of those choices immediately. I was inspired in part by the bold blues in the Sauza® Tequila bottle for my decorations.
That was my jumping off point which helps me choose plates, napkins, and some of the other accessories. I even included a touch of gold (because you know how much I love gold) to add a little sparkle. I also included a few things that were a nod to Cinco de Mayo like maracas, mini sombreros, and a DIY piñata. A macrame runner and color “splattered” chrysanthemums add texture and a casual feel.
Classic with a Twist
If you’re struggling with party food or drink ideas, think “classic with a twist.” For example a margarita is a great option for a Cinco de Mayo party. However, add a twist by flavoring it with strawberry and mint or vanilla and pineapple. It’s still classic, but with something special. That’s why I created a Vanilla Pineapple Margarita and Jalapeño Paloma cocktail for my celebration.
The same goes for decor. While classic and authentic are a great place to start, inject a bit of your personality, too. Everyone has seen the typical Cinco de Mayo decor, however, they haven’t seen your interpretation of it.
Food for Thought
Since Sauza® Tequila was a big part of my celebration, I tried to incorporate it in any way I could. Remember tequila isn’t just for cocktails. It goes nicely with food dishes as well. And since tequila is great with anything citrus, it also pairs well with food that works with citrus – things like seafood (i.e., tilapia, crab, shrimp), chicken, and even pork.
Since I think kabobs are such fun party food (plus it was an excuse to break out my grill in the spring), I used Sauza Signature Blue Tequila to marinate my chicken before I skewered it with pineapple and sliced limes. That subtle touch of flavor worked nicely with the rest of my menu.
In my opinion, a party isn’t a party without something sweet. For this celebration, I thought I’d tweak my mason jar cheesecake recipe to suit the celebration. I dressed it up for the party with a splash of lime and Sauza® Signature Blue Tequila tequila to create Mini Margarita Cheesecakes.
To make them extra special, I piped colored candy melts into different cactus shapes to adorn the cheesecakes. These mini cacti add the perfect pop of fun color and whimsy to my buffet.
I think it’s always fun to offer a small gift to your guests before they leave the party. And, when your small gift can double as party decor, you’re a really smart party planner. For this celebration I created these festive mini piñata boxes. What I love about them is that they are multi-purpose. Not only do they make your table look fabulous and festive, they can also act as a place card for your guests. Just tuck each guest’s name into or on top of the piñata.
In addition, these piñatas are also boxes. Instead of smashing them, you simply open them to reveal a variety of yummy treats inside. Each guest can take one home as a little memento of the party. Learn how to make them here.
Lastly, remember to relax and have fun. A stressed out or nervous host isn’t fun for you or your guests, especially for Cinco de Mayo. One thing I like to do is set aside 5-10 minutes before the event starts to sit down and enjoy a cocktail (in this case, a big ol’ margarita). Not only does this allow me to enjoy the fruits of my labor (and sample the product), but it also gives me a chance to relax before guests arrive.
When entertaining, strive for excellence, but remember to keep things simple. In other words, pay attention to the small details, but don’t let them drive you bananas. Guests will remember if you didn’t have limes and salt for their margaritas. However, they won’t care if the salt was imported or the limes were shaped like miniature swans.
With that, you’re ready to tackle Cinco de Mayo like a pro. As I mentioned, I’ll be back all week sharing the recipes for the delicious treats I mentioned above. (Everything will be linked up below.) I’m also going to teach you how to make that super fun piñata and share a Cinco de Mayo-inspired Tuesday Tunes playlist. Grab your sombrero and let’s party.
For even more Cinco de Mayo ideas, you can follow along with Sauza® Tequila. They will be sharing recipes and other entertaining tips on Pinterest and Instagram (I’ll be hanging out there, too.) So be sure to check out all that awesomeness, too and of course, share your own #MyKindofCinco. Cheers!
IBC Cinco de Mayo Fiesta!