THE DISH: Cinco, Cinco, save! Holiday deals abound

Today's the day. Make the most out of your Cinco de Mayo celebration with discounted food and specials.

Celebrate the holiday by looking for the best downtown margarita. The Bakersfield Downtown Business Association is again hosting the Downtown Margarita Contest and voting begins today.

Taking part this year are Cask Strength Bar and Kitchen (1623 19th St., Suite 300), Mexicali (631 18th St.), Rooster's Honky Tonk (1531 19th St.), KC Steakhouse (2515 F St.) and its Stockyard Speakeasy (2525 F St.), Nuestro Mexico (716 21st St.), Zama Latin American Cuisine (1623 19th St.), Padre Hotel (1702 18th St.), Jerry's Pizza & Pub (1817 Chester Ave.) and Guthrie's Alley Cat (1525 Wall St.), which is serving a coconut lime margarita.

Margarita lovers can weigh in now through May 18. Simply visit a participating business and scan the QR code to vote.

The top three drinks will go on to compete at the Sound of Bakersfield Downtown Music Fest on May 19 at Eye and 19th streets.

Imbibers who visit at least six spots can be entered in a special drawing.

This weekend Tiki-Ko (1919 K St.) is serving three themed cocktails and a Patinadora Especial ($9), aka a Modelo Especial and a shot of Lunazul tequila.

The Lost City of Mazapan ($15) is a mix of dark Jamaican rum, Licor 43, coffee liqueur, orgeat, vanilla syrup, almond milk and muddled mazapan candy.

Lovecraft fans might enjoy the Margarita de Cthulhu ($14), made with Espolon tequila, petite orange shrub liqueur, fresh lime and orange juice, agave syrup, topped with a smoked salt foam and fresh shaved lime zest.

The Miklo's Mezcal Old-Fashioned ($14) includes the smoky spirit along with smoked pineapple syrup and bitters all served over a large ice sphere from the homies at Oleander Ice Co.

If you want a holiday filled with gambling, head to Eagle Mountain Casino (1850 West St. in Porterville, off Highway 65), which is offering dining specials and free Jarritos.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Acorn Diner will offer a Mexican buffet. Later it will serve chicken mole with Spanish rice and Peruvian beans and leche flan with caramel for dessert.

Redwood Taphouse will have a smoked tri-tip wet burrito and strawberry tres leches cake.

The River Steakhouse will serve entrees of New York strip steak ranchero style, served with Spanish rice, beans and corn tortillas, and tequila prawns with steamed rice and green beans. For dessert, it will have a margarita cheesecake with a chipotle graham crust and tequila whipped cream.

In the Cedar Food Court, birria enchiladas will be available with rice and beans.

Guests can also enjoy a refreshing Jarrito paloma at the Ember Bar.

A free Jarritos (mandarin or lime) will be available to diners who order one of the day's specials other than the buffet.

The day will also feature entertainment with tunes from DJ Swift in The Redwood Taphouse from 5 to 9 p.m. and strolling performances by Mariachi Alas de Plata from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. throughout the casino.

Toasted (6603 Panama Lane, #103) is serving aguas frescas ($5) in options of cucumber pineapple and jamaica, served with Tajin and tamarindo candy, that can be brunched up with a shot of Patron ($4).

Customers can also get a mimosa flight de Mayo ($17) — with the aguas frescas, Mexican candy and fruta fresca cup options — and a mango hibiscus margarita ($9).

Chef's specials include shredded chicken tinga tostadas ($13) and carnitas street tacos ($13), both served with beans, and shrimp cocktail ($14), served with chips and a fruit skewer.

Scrambled (3631 Rosedale Highway) will help you start your day with a chile relleno special ($10.95).

Take advantage of happy hour food and drink specials all day starting at 11 a.m. at 1933 (7900 Downing Ave.). Bucket deals include beer — five for $25 (import) or five for $20 (domestic) — and seltzer with four for $18. There will also be bottomless mimosas until 4 p.m.

Black Angus Steakhouse (360s Rosedale Highway) will offer all-day happy hour and $2 gold strike margaritas for the holiday.

At Huevo House (3939 Ming Ave.), enjoy $2 off all margaritas and micheladas and a $9.99 quesabirria taco plate daily through Sunday.

Baja Fresh (9000 Ming Ave., Suite 2) is offering $5.55 off orders of $20 or more (pre-tax) made at bajafresh.com. Use the code "BAJACINCO" when placing an online order today.

El Pollo Loco (multiple locations) is offering a fiesta of flavors for its Loco Rewards members.

Rewards members can receive $20 off a $100 catering order and customers who purchase a $50 eGift Card will receive a $10 bonus.

Today, rewards members can also receive two free shredded chicken crunchy tacos with an in-app order of $10 or more as well as $0 delivery fee all day long.

Orders can be made online at elpolloco.com, in the app or in person.

Applebee's Grill + Bar (9000 Ming Ave., Suite M) is serving its famous $1 margaritas, aka the Dollarita, all month long. Enjoy the classic or strawberry or mango varieties.

The chain's Cerveza & Sips are also back, including $5 Dos Equis Brewtus draft beer; $5 Rock & Berry Rita, a strawberry margarita featuring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's Teremana Blanco Tequila; or the $9 Breaking Rock Rita, a slightly smoky margarita featuring Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston's Dos Hombres Mezcal and Teremana Tequila.

If you are tired of tacos, Applebee's also has the new chicken and bacon loaded fries, with crispy chicken tenders, cheddar cheese, Applewood-smoked bacon, house-made ranch and parsley.

Del Taco (multiple locations) is offering deals for its Del Yeah! Rewards members.

Now through May 10, members can receive 20% off their pre-taxed subtotal each day. The offer is limited to one per guest, per day, with a maximum discount of $10 off an order.

This weekend, rewards members can enjoy a free burrito with any $10 purchase. Diners must order through the app, deltaco.com or scan their Del Yeah! Rewards app at the register. Orders of $15 or more will have a $0 delivery fee during the same time period.

Chipotle (multiple locations): The chain is offering free delivery using the code CINCO24 online or through the app.

Dutch Bros (multiple location) has kicked off the holiday and summer (a bit early) with three new drinks.

The mangonada Rebel blends the chain's exclusive energy drink, Rebel, with mangonada flavor and tops it with strawberry fruit and Tajín.

Go sweet with the churro freeze, a blended caramel coffee with cinnamon sugar soft top and churro bits.

The watermelon fizz mixes watermelon-infused sparkling water with strawberry fruit and a splash of lemonade.

Those celebrating at home can pick up a taco grande pizza, which has returned to the menu at Papa Murphy’s Take 'n' Bake Pizza (multiple locations) for a limited time.

This season’s must-try pizza features a topping of zesty taco meat (ground beef or tender grilled chicken), Roma tomatoes, onions, black olives, hand-grated cheddar and whole-milk mozzarella, on a base of refried beans and salsa.

The culinary fusion pizza is available now through May 19.

Celebrate teachers

Applebee's Grill + Bar will offer a free appetizer for teachers and nurses now through May 11 with the purchase of an adult entree.

This offer in recognition of national appreciation weeks is good on dine-in orders and educators must show a valid school/work badge to their server to redeem.

Mountain Mike's Pizza (multiple locations) will celebrate Teacher Appreciation Day on Tuesday by offering guests 15% off all pizzas with the code "TEACHER24."

Small bites

Speaking of Mountain Mike's, the chain has rolled out the limited-time Jalapeño Not-Knots, a cheesy and spicy extension to the brand's hugely popular Not-Knots product line.

These Not-Knots wrap spicy jalapeños, creamy garlic sauce and melty cheese in the chain's signature dough.

The dish is available now through June 30 for $5.99 for a serving of six.

Carol DeNembo, chief marketing officer for Mountain Mike's Pizza, said of the offer, "We believe that offering high-quality, delicious options at an affordable price is more important than ever, and at Mountain Mike's we remain committed to providing exceptional value and culinary excellence, ensuring that everyone can enjoy the comfort and joy of our delicious offerings."

Members of Cracker Barrel's rewards program can have an early taste of the chain's new bee sting chicken tenders.

Now through Monday, rewards members alone can order the chicken drizzled with a sweet-heat honey glaze in a sandwich or as a tenders entree for their dine-in meal at the eatery at 3310 California Ave.

Ono Hawaiian BBQ (2665 Calloway Drive, Suite 208; and 2630 Mount Vernon Ave #300) is serving an island spice grilled fish aloha plate for $7 for a limited time.

The tender fish filet infused with a savory blend of spices, including a subtle kick of cayenne pepper, is also available for plate lunches, family meals, gourmet salads and catering trays.

This offer is available now through May 15 for in-store and online. Use the online code "ISLANDSPICE7" to receive the discounted plate. Promo is not available through third-party apps.

Subway (multiple locations) has brought back its popular honey oat bread and made creamy Sriracha sauce part of the permanent menu. nationwide

The chain is also offering a new Miss Vickie's chip flavor inspired by Subway's signature Baja chipotle sauce, according to RestaurantNews.com.

The bread, which has been off the menu for the last four years, returns for a limited time thanks to a campaign of fan-made petitions, social media tributes and copycat recipes.

"These latest upgrades to Subway's menu will delight any sandwich lover craving something with bold and unique flavor, whether it's light and sweet or bringing the heat," Paul Fabre, senior vice president of culinary and innovation at Subway, said in a news release. "While our fans know and love our honey oat bread and creamy Sriracha sauce, I can't wait for them to see how we reimagined our signature Baja chipotle sauce in our partnership with Miss Vickie's."