Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Sweet Baby Fiesta

Whether you speak Spanish or not, everyone knows that "Cinco de Mayo" translates to May 5. Right, so what does that even mean? Cinco de Mayo honors the victory of Mexican forces over the French in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. (Not Mexican Independence Day like most of us might think). But, I was never exactly too fond of my history fact, my knowledge of Cinco de Mayo usually translates to, "let's party."

So where do we celebrate? Most of us might jump to the obvious, and select a Mexican restaurant. But how about something different? Sweet Baby Ray's Barbecue Restaurant (yes, like the sauce!) in Elk Grove Village, Ill. is celebrating Cinco de Mayo all weekend long: May 2 - May 5.

Chef Jose Alvizos is sharing his family recipes for the occasion. He's chosen appetizers like Cocktail de Cameron, wild caught shrimp tossed with fresh avocado, freshly squeezed lime juice, cilantro and tomato, served in a salted margarita glass ($8.95), and a Chopped Brisket Tostada, crispy corn tortilla topped with refried beans, chopped smoked brisket, tomatillo sals, creme frache, shredded lettuce, pico de gallo and Chihuahua cheese ($6.95).

Chef Jose is also offering a Carne Asada Trujillo, grilled marinated skirt steak (yum!) topped with a charred tomato salsa, grilled cebollitas, fire roatsed jalapenos and warm tortillas ($17.95), Smoked Chicken Enchiladas, house smoked chicken wrapped in flour tortillas, topped with rich mole poblano sauce and melted Chihuahua cheese ($12.95) and Pulled Pork Tamales, tender smoked pork mixed with roasted New Mexico green chiles wrapped in fresh masa and steamed in cornhusk, served with a roasted poblano sauce ($12.95). Each of these tasty entrees is served with steamed rice and refried beans.

All this spicy food making you thirsty? Sweet Baby Ray's is also featuring $5 Jose Cuervo Gold Margaritas and Sarah's Prickly Pear Margarita, Cuervo tequila, Triple Sec, prickly pear puree, fresh squeezed lime juice and lemon juice ($7.50). An assortment of Mexican beers, including Dos Equis, Negro Modelo, Modelo Especial and Corona will also be featured.

If that's not enough fiesta time for you, stop by Sweet Baby Ray's on Saturday, May 3 for FREE Latin dance lessons in the bar area from popular dance coach, Paul Mallin. He'll be around from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. showing everyone how to shake it. Ole!
Sweet Baby Ray's is located at 800 E. Higgins Rd. in Elk Grove Village, Ill. For more information about Cinco de Mayo specials or regular menus, call (847) 437-9555 or visit

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