On Cinco de Mayo or any day at happy hour, this trio of bars offers marvelous margaritas and south-of-the-border appetizers.
Canteen Modern Tequila Bar
640 S. Mill Ave., Tempe
This Mill Avenue hotspot, with its open-air bar and padded-seat patio fronting the main drag, is a fiesta any day or night, but happy hours are especially fun thanks to bargain prices. Coors Light drafts
cost $2; bottled domestic beers cost $2.50; imports and well drinks cost $3; imports, craft beers and pineapple-infused tequila shots (ay, carumba!) run a mere $3.50; and top-notch house margaritas and all wines are $4. Needa some comida? Shredded beef flautas and fries cost $3 each, while guacamole, steak tostadas or chips and a house-made salsa flight cost $3.50. Chicken or steak skewers and wings are $4 – the highest priced items on the page. 4-6:30 p.m. daily.
401 W. Clarendon Ave., Phoenix
Doug Robson’s kitsch-chic Mexican hideaway in the hip Clarendon Hotel serves up street-style food with flair throughout the day, but happy hour pricing borders on loco. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better guacamole ($5) in town. Score the famous braised pork quesadillas for $3, cochinita pibil tacos for $1.50 and carne asada tacos for $1.75. Enjoy a cob of elote callejero (grilled corn with cotija cheese and smoked paprika) for $4, or a gooey, can’t-stop-eating-it queso fundido for $6. Margaritas with fresh juices and Sauza Blanco cost $5, but the bebidas list here is as long as the Baja peninsula, with spiked aguas frescas, sangria and wine for $5, and beers and micheladas for $3. 3-6 p.m. daily and 7:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Tuesday.
Los Sombreros Café & Cantina
2534 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
Hailing from San Miguel de Allende but inspired by the full spectrum of Mexican cuisine, owner Azucena Tovar recently revamped her menu and launches summer happy hour pricing May 1. The menu includes $2 off appetizers, $2 draft beers and her fresh, crisp lime juice margs with Azul tequila for $4.95. The new apps list includes Mexico City-style deep-fried quesadillas ($3.95 at happy hour) with fillings such as chicharron en salsa verde or nopales with guajillo sauce. Snapper ceviche ($8.95) is redolent of the sea, and don’t miss the tender goat tacos ($8.95 a plate). They’re the bahhhh-omb. 3-7 p.m. daily, bar and patio only.
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