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Cinco de Brew Corner

Salud! It’ll be time to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this Saturday!

Traditionally, Cinco de Mayo festivities include family, friends and tasty food and drink. Officially, the holiday celebrates the unexpected victory of a smaller, less equipped, Mexican army over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. This year, commemorate unexpected victories with a selection of food friendly, Cinco-inspired lagers and local seasonal brews from the Co-op.

La Raza Ambar

Farmstrong Brewing of Mount Vernon, WA / 4% alcohol by volume / low IBU

$7.99 per 6-pk 12 oz cans

Drink the brew next door. This hometown brew translates to “The Race”, paying homage to the mix of indigenous Native Americans and Spanish immigrants that make up the bulk of the Mexican population. La Raza is made with 100% Skagit grown and milled barley malts from the local pioneers at Skagit Valley Malting. This Mexican-style amber lager featurees gentle, balanced hops from Washington state family farms. It has a mild, crisp flavor and is a great gateway craft option for fans of domestic beers. Approachable and refreshing, La Raza makes a fine accompaniment to many dishes, including spicy Thai food.

Pair it with: Grilled Oysters / BBQ Pork / CURED Bratwurst

Modelo Especial Mexican Lager

Grupo Modelo of Mexico City / 4.4% alcohol by volume / low bitterness IBU /

$9.49 per 6-pk, 12 oz bottles

Modelo’s Mexican lager was developed in Tacuba, Mexico in 1925. Brewers at Casa Modelo consulted the techniques of renowned German brewmasters. Modelo Especial – translated to”Special Model” – is a balanced, light Pilsner-style lager. For over 90 years, this authentic Mexican lager has been a companion on sunny days and celebratory nights. One sip reveals a crisp, refreshing brew that is ideal to tame the spicy heat of homemade Stuffed Jalapeno Peppers.

Pair it with: Carnitas Tacos / Shrimp Ceviche with Avocado / Pozole Stew with Hominy /

Espacio Mexican-Style Lager

Ecliptic Brewing of Portland, OR / 4.8% alcohol by volume / 40 IBU

$10.49 per 6-pk, 12 oz cans

Save the lime wedge and add a bit of fresh lime zest to a liquid sunshine lager – you’ve got Espacio. This latest seasonal is a refreshing shift from one of Portland’s most popular and acclaimed craft brewers. Quench your thirst with this bright and clean tasting lager. It makes a perfect mate for picnics, hikes and porch-sitting.

Pair it with: Korean-style Chicken with Rice / Cheeseburgers / Fried Peanut Butter & Banana Sandwiches

By: Claire

ClaireClaire Harlock Garber loves to eat and drink and write about it. She has worked in the food industry for nearly a decade and has been on staff at the Skagit Valley Co-op since 2010. She writes the regular columns Skagit Brew Corner, The Cheese Whisperer, The Bounty of Bulk, and What's Dippin' in the Well for the Co-op's blog, as well as articles for the Natural Enquirer newsletter. Contact Claire at claire(at)skagitfoodcoop(dot)com.