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How Long Island restaurants are celebrating Cinco de Mayo to go

Mexican restaurant workers across Long Island are expecting a different type of Cinco de Mayo celebration due to the coronavirus pandemic. Steve Langford reports. Credit: Newsday / Raychel Brightman

That an obscure holiday celebrating Mexico’s 1862 victory over France in the Battle of Puebla has come to mean so much is testament to the enduring fascination with 19th-century Mexican history, naturally — and an unshakable thirst for margaritas, which incidentally did not even exist then. Couple these with a mood of increasing frustration toward a virus that has already laid waste to Mardi Gras, St. Patrick’s Day and Easter, and you’ve all the makings of a domestic Cinco celebration the likes of which few of us have ever witnessed.

Long Island bars and restaurants stand ready to enable any in-casa affair you might wish to host, especially New Hyde Park’s K. Pacho (516-366-4395, kpacho.com). Their $39.95 “virtual fiesta,” available for takeout or delivery, includes tacos and fajitas for a party of five, a “welcome back margarita voucher for when we reopen,” and crucially, an invitation to K. Pacho’s evening Zoom Cinco de Mayo dance party hosted by disc jockey Scuba live on Facebook.

In a move both poetic and timely, Cinco de Mayo will also mark the reopening of Tocolo Cantina in Garden City. The popular modern Mexican spot (516-222-0060, tocolocantina.com) is offering delivery and takeout of a large menu of a la carte items, plus “Cinco to Go” family packages of tacos ($45) and fajitas ($55), both of which come with guacamole and chips, rice and beans, and churros. Quart-size margaritas are also available in several flavors starting at $25, as well as sangria and beer.

Not to be outdone, several restaurants in the Lessing’s group (lessings.com) will feature $50 “Cinco Bundles” for curbside pickup and takeout. Each comes with six tacos in your choice of meats and four margaritas in a variety of flavors. Participating eateries are Library Cafe in Farmingdale (516-752-7678), Maxwell’s in Islip (631-210-0011), Post Office Cafe in Babylon (631-669-9224), Sandbar in Cold Spring Harbor (631-498-6188) and Finnegan’s in Huntington (631-423-9696), and Southside Bar & Restaurant in Bay Shore (631-665-9596).

Here are a few more perennial Cinco de Mayo favorites offering takeout and/or delivery:

5 de Mayo in Westbury (516-280-7795, 5demayomexican.com)

Pancho’s Cantina in Island Park (516-897-8300, panchoscantina.com)

On the Border Grill & Cantina in Hicksville (516-342-7777) and Holtsville (631-317-2657, ontheborder.com)

Del Fuego in St. James (631-963-6900), Northport (631-651-9393), Babylon (631-620-3700) and Patchogue (631-569-5400, delfuegorestaurant.com)

Pico Tequila Grill in East Northport (631-486-7843) and Bay Shore (631-647-8907, picotequilagrill.com)

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