Tips for the Tastiest Cinco de Mayo Taco Bar
Here at the Wine Sisterhood, we never miss an opportunity for a fiesta! This week we’ve been prepping some plans for Cinco de Mayo that are sure to excite and delight.
Since tacos are so versatile and our guests’ favorite flavors run the gamut, we’ve decided to invite our Wine Sister over to dig into a tasty taco bar. Like the assembly line at your favorite local burrito joint, the best taco bars include everyone’s familiar favorites, with options for the more adventurous who like to mix it up. And, they’re simply a whole lotta fun!
Here are our top six tips for setting up the tastiest Cinco de Mayo taco bar:
1. Set up shells. Have an assortment of taco shells available for guests. We had both soft flour tortillas and crispy corn tostadas for guests. You can also make a batch of Mexican rice for those wanting to recreate their favorite burrito bowl or tortilla chips for nachos.
2. Chill the wine. The star of this party was the adventurous Girl & Dragon Pinot Grigio, fresh and fruity, with notes of citrus that pairs beautifully with the festive flavors on our taco bar. Also consider Girl & Dragon Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon, which both pair well with roasted and grilled meats. Can you say carnitas?
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3. Make-ahead meat. Have at least a couple of meat options for your guests. We suggest one red and one white, like beef and pork. Most meat options can be made ahead of time, like a day or two before, so your to-do list isn’t as long the day of the party. Here’s our go-to carnitas recipe that will have them coming back for seconds.
4. Don’t forget the dairy. Cotija, queso fresco, cheddar, monterey jack, sour cream – have one, two, a few or all of them arranged on your bar to take those tacos to the next level.
5. Prep sides and toppings. Salsas can be made one or two days ahead of time. Because of the nature of avocados, we recommend whipping it up just before guests arrive (you can always prep the tomatoes and onions ahead of time). At the end of this post is a delicious recipe for guacamole that we just can’t get enough of. We also like having a batch of refried beans included in the bar too. Plus limes, lots and lots of limes!
6. Add a touch of flair. We’re in love with the llama napkin holders our party host Helen Jane Hearn found. Pair them or other festive napkin rings with bright and colorful napkins to add pops of color and fun to the table.
Wine Sister Guacamole Recipe
- 4 ripe Haas avocados
- 1/2 lemon’s worth of fresh lemon juice
- 8 dashes Tabasco sauce
- 1/2 cup tiny chopped red onion
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 medium tomato, seeded and finely chopped
- 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
Halve and pit the avocados. Take a spoon and scoop all the flesh in spoon-sized pieces into a bowl. Add the lemon juice, Tabasco, onion, garlic and salt and pepper; toss all together with a spoon. Mash with a potato masher or a large fork if you like your guacamole more mushed.
Add the tomatoes and cilantro and stir to combine. Adjust the seasonings as needed.
And stand back as people try not to elbow each other in the face on their way to the bottom of the bowl.
Happy hosting Wine Sisters!
What are your plans for Cinco de Mayo? Cooking up something special? Share your plans with us in a comment below!