Putting a Twist on Cinco de Mayo

Starting this weekend, restaurants, bars, cantinas and patios all over the city will be jammed with people looking to celebrate the beloved Mexican holiday Cinco de Mayo by throwing back a few margaritas and beers. As the weekend draws closer, the biggest concern for many establishments and party planners isn’t drawing in the crowds; it’s the issue of supplying limes.

The currently coveted citrus fruit that’s been referred to as Oro Verde (Green Gold) has turned into somewhat of a hot commodity due to an untimely trio of poor weather, citrus tree bacteria and enterprising cartels in Mexico who have sought to turn limes into a black market item.

If you are lucky enough to find limes in local produce sections right now, you’re looking at paying around three times the regular price! Newsfeeds and blogs from all over North America have been reporting sensational stories of resourceful bar owners lifting limes from events and in some cases paying upwards of $200 for a case (roughly six times their usual price). Even more unusual, many resorts in Mexico have had no choice but to charge an extra 50 cents with every lime that goes on top of a Corona.

Ramon Fosado, who works for the Mexican Consulate in Calgary, is busy preparing for the annual Cinco de Mayo party taking place this Saturday night during which he’ll be going toe to toe with Contemporary Calgary’s Artistic Director Jeffery Spalding in a fierce competition to see who can make the best margarita.  When we spoke with Mr. Fosado, he told us the biggest challenge with preparing for the competition is not only finding limes but also finding fruit that is of decent quality. The limes that can be sourced from local grocery stores are less than desirable and are still going for ridiculous prices. The Consulate’s attaché for cultural and commercial affairs is known for his stellar lime margaritas but mentioned that he’s considering revamping his current recipe for the weekend so party-goers might get to try a whole new twist on the traditional salt-rimmed libation sans lime.

The supply of limes is expected to return sooner rather than later and everyone should still look forward to celebrating our favourite Mexican holiday. If you’re looking for a place to let loose this weekend, the Cinco de Mayo fundraiser party being organized by the Mexican Consulate and Contemporary Calgary is sure to be one of the best ways to celebrate everything red, white and green. There will be piñatas to smash, a back alley BBQ to enjoy, and of course an exciting margarita competition to judge. All profits will be going towards Contemporary Calgary, a new art collective that will merge the MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art), Institute for Modern and Contemporary Art, and the Art Gallery of Calgary.

Buy your tickets today.

#LYNL | (Live Your Notable Life)

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