Eats Beat

Yes, Cinco de Mayo has food specials: Baja fish tacos, tres leches cheesecake and more

Casa Jacaranda: a small-town dining find in Venus

Casa Jacaranda is a traditional Mexican cafe and elaborate bakery on the tiny old downtown street of Venus.
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Casa Jacaranda is a traditional Mexican cafe and elaborate bakery on the tiny old downtown street of Venus.

Cinco de Mayo is the ultimate Tex-Mex holiday.

Texas native Gen. Ignacio Zaragoza led Mexico’s army to victory over the French in 1862.

So 157 years later, we celebrate with tres leches cheesecake.

For the first time since Corona and Modelo beers began heavily promoting the holiday 30 years ago, Cinco de Mayo is as much about food as drinks.

In South Main Village, TacoHeads and Brix Barbecue will team up for a family-friendly “Cinco on South Main” festival Sunday afternoon.

Tinie’s Mexican Rotisserie, the new South Main spinoff of TacoHeads, will show off some of its coming menu items; $5, 125 S. Main St.

The reopened El Ranchito Restaurant, 9016 White Settlement Road, is a major sponsor and vendor at the 31st annual Cinco de Mayo in Worth Square downtown.

The restaurant will sell beef or chicken fajita burritos, enchiladas and turkey legs; free admission, noon-10 p.m., 900 Main St.

Barbecue favorite Meat U Anywhere goes Tex-Mex this weekend with the Sedino family’s smoked brisket tamales.

Meat U Anywhere is also launching Fajita Fridays. It opens at 6 a.m. daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner, closing after lunch Sundays; 919 W. Northwest Highway, Grapevine, 817-251-1227, or 91 Trophy Club Drive, Trophy Club, 682-237-7854, meatuanywhere.com.

The new Flores Barbecue truck at the Clearfork Trailhead is open Fridays and Saturdays and will serve its regular brisket tacos on housemade brisket-fat tortillas this weekend.

Expect more specials, Michael Wyont said. Flores opens at 11 a.m. Friday and Saturday for lunch only; 4801 Edwards Ranch Road, 254-580-3576.

In Grapevine, the Texas Top 10 Tex-Mex Mi Día From Scratch will serve its chicken flautitas platter for $10.

Mi Día was rated among Texas’ “10 Best” Tex-Mex restaurants by readers of USA Today; lunch and dinner daily at 1295 S. Main St., Grapevine, 817-421-4747, and in Flower Mound or Plano; midiafromscratch.com.

(Enchiladas Olé and Joe T. García’s also made the “10 Best.”)

The Houston-based Pappasito’s Cantina chain is serving a special tres leches cheesecake; 2704 West Freeway, Fort Worth, or 321 W. Road to Six Flags, Arlington, pappasitos.com.

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Tacos, salsas and more for Cinco de Mayo at Bartaco. Handout photo

Founded in the Northeast but now Irving-based, Bartaco celebrates with its new seared-scallops “secret taco” and regular menu items like its pork belly or duck tacos and churros.

It’s not Texan, but it’s tasty; 1701 River Run, 817-663-8226, bartaco.com.

Oregon-based Thirsty Lion Gastropub & Grill goes Tex-Mex with a mariachi band and dancers at its Glade Parks location in Euless from 3 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sunday.

The menu will offer special pork belly street tacos, Baja-style fish tacos, a smoked chicken salad and jalapeno cheeseburgers; 1220 Chisholm Trail, Euless; 817-283-9000, thirstyliongastropub.com.

In Sundance Square, Waters Restaurant will serve Baja-style fried redfish tacos, shrimp-crab ceviche and churros at dinner all weekend.

Waters is open for lunch and dinner daily at 301 Main St., 817-984-1110, waterstexas.com

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Bar Louie will serve a Philly cheesesteak taco for Cinco de Mayo. Handout photo

In Crockett Row, the Highlands and NorthEast Mall, the Texas-based Bar Louie chain will serve a special Philly cheesesteak taco or a “red Rockin” chicken taco; barlouie.com.

Near Burleson, Lost Oak Winery will welcome Chicas Tacos to serve from 2 p.m. to 5 p,.m. Sunday; 8101 County Road 802, 817-426-6625, ext. 103, lostoakwinery.com.



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Columnist Bud Kennedy is a Fort Worth guy who covered high school football at 16 and has moved on to two Super Bowls, seven political conventions and 15 Texas Legislature sessions. Since 1985, he has also written more than 2,000 “Eats Beat” columns about Texas dining, restaurants and food.
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