Whether you’re heading south for a Mexican vacay or flying out for a quick work trip, there’s no reason you can’t make this May 5 the best Cinco de Mayo yet.
We’ve rounded up 10 top airport bars and restaurants in North America boasting flavourful cocktails perfect for an impromptu Cinco de Mayo (or, Cinco de Flyo, as we like to call it). You can’t say we never agave you anything 😉
Portland International Airport, Portland, Oregon, U.S.
Did you know there are over 200 different tequilas? Well now you do, and, at Sandoval’s Tequila Grill in Portland, Ore., you can try them all (not recommended). Sip them on the rocks or have them blended into your favourite cocktail.
Location: Concourse C
Drink this: Cazadores Reposado tequila sampler, a 100% blue agave blend aged in a white oak cask.
Denver International Airport, Denver, Colorado, U.S.
While Denver is known as a beer town (and even has its own airport brewery), there are also a few cocktail spots to keep you entertained before heading to your gate. We picked Denver‘s Que Bueno!, an affordable quick-serve pit stop with freshly made burritos and tasty margaritas.
Location: B gates near Gate B52
Drink this: Sip on the Fresh Jalapeno Margarita for a spicy twist on a classic.
George Bush International Airport, Houston, Texas, U.S.
Location: Terminal A
Drink this: If you’re feeling fancy, try the Grand Gold Margarita, made with Jose Cuervo gold tequila, orange liqueur and topped with freshly squeezed lime juice.
Toronto Pearson International Airport, Toronto, Ontario
Apropos has breakfast burritos, fresh fish tacos and guacamole on their menu, which is exactly what you’re looking for from Cinco de Mayo airport fare. Stop by for a quick bite and a refreshing cocktail next time you’re in Toronto.
Location: Terminal 1 near gate F62
Drink this: A Mexican-inspired take on the Bloody Caesar, the Apropos Caesar features tequila, celery and sriracha.
Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
In-house guacamole and hand-crafted margaritas? Yes, please. Chicago‘s Tortas Frontera is a highly reviewed walk-up that has amazing Mexican food, and there’s typically a long line to prove it. Trust us, it’s worth the wait, and the line moves quickly. You’ll have a fresh drink in hand, stat.
Location: Terminal 1, 3 & 5
Drink this: Tortas Frontera claims to have the best margarita you could find in any airport, so choose anything.
Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport, Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.
The original Barrio Cafe once held the largest tequila collection in the state of Arizona. Nowadays, there are over 300 choices at the airport location in Phoenix, which claims to be open from the first flight of the day to the last. The staff promises to serve you the finest tequila cocktails, making it a must-visit on your next stop in Phoenix.
Location: Terminal 4
Drink this: Try the Barrio Bomba Margarita; it’s as delicious as it is large.
Mexico City Airport, Mexico City, Mexico
Indulge in fried chicken wings and blended margaritas at Baron Rojo. This popular meeting spot in Mexico City is the perfect place to relax and unwind before your flight. Open 24 hours, you might even be able to catch some late-night karaoke before your next red-eye flight.
Location: Terminal 2 directly in front of the E2 gate.
Drink this: Try the mango margarita, a well reviewed favourite.
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Dallas, Texas, U.S.
When in Texas, Tex-Mex is mandatory. Stop by the Tequileria, a casual dining spot that will surprise you with its wide range of tequilas and margaritas and its fast service.
Location: Terminal E at gate E12
Drink this: Order most margaritas and get the extra leftover in the shaker on the side.
Oakland International Airport, Oakland, California, U.S.
Next time you’re flying through Oakland, head to Andale for premium, hand-selected tequilas that complement their fresh Mexican fare. Enjoy a margarita and some grub at the bar, or take a flight-ready option like grilled fish tacos or the Andale burrito to-go.
Location: Terminal 2
Drink this: With such a wide variety of tequilas, you can’t go wrong. Ask your bartender for a recommendation based on your preferences and enjoy.
Charlotte Douglass International Airport, Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.
When Jose Cuervo is in the name of the restaurant, you’re in for a good time. Jose Cuervo Tequileria in Charlotte is a festive establishment with classic Mexican dishes and margarita shakers so large, they’ll fill your glass twice.
Location: Main atrium between all terminals.
Drink this: Order the Ultimate Margarita, a drinkable standard marg with the perfect blend of sweet and sour and a rim of salt or sugar.
When all else fails, make your own on-board margarita. Order orange juice, sprite and tequila from your nearest flight attendant. Over ice, mix tequila and a splash of OJ and fill with some sprite. If you’re feeling agile, try stepping up your in-flight drinks game by adding a packet of salt or sugar to the rim of your plastic cup (without spilling on yourself or your neighbour).
How do you plan to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this year? Let us know in the comments below.
Feature photo: iStock Photo/ luckyraccoon