Cinco de Mayo celebrates the Battle of Puebla, in which Mexican troops prevailed over French forces on May 5, 1862. Mexico’s soldiers, greatly outnumbered, defeated the army that was thought to be the most powerful in the world at the time. Though it did not stop the French from taking control of Mexico, the victory boosted the nation’s morale and determination to fight the invasion.
In honor of the holiday, Diane Powers first launched Old Town’s Cinco de Mayo festival in 1983. Today, she continues her tradition of celebrating Mexican culture with lively revelries at her Bazaar del Mundo Restaurants.
Specials on food and drinks include: the festive “Cincorita” margarita – strawberry, Midori (melon flavored liqueur) and lime in layers of green, white and red, paying homage to the Mexican flag; and a “Best of the West” Carne Asada and Shrimp Enchilada Plate, served with refried beans and achiote seasoned vegetables. Delicioso!
And, it wouldn’t be one of Powers’ distinguished events without strolling Mariachis and Folkloric dancers!
Also visit Powers’ Bazaar del Mundo Shops in Old Town for festive and authentic Cinco de Mayo attire and decorations for your own home or party.
Join us Thursday through Saturday, May 5–7, for live entertainment, promotional giveaways, delicious food and drink specials, and a fiesta unlike any other!
Now through Easter Sunday, every Friday is Fish Taco Friday at Casa de Bandini! Enjoy delicious discounts on your favorite fish taco plates and celebrate the start to your weekend. Come see us soon!
You’ve heard about love at first sight, but at Casa De Bandini we believe in love at first bite! This Valentine’s Day, bring your loved ones for an unforgettable authentic Mexican experience. Here at Casa De Bandini, we offer a variety of delicious Mexican dishes in generous portions perfect for sharing. Start your meal with our popular Antojitos De Bandini Platter, which includes a few favorites like our cheesy quesadillas, taquitos and nachos — all bursting with mouthwatering flavors.
Our beautiful ambiance and lovely décor are more than enough to make any guest fall head-over-heels. Decorated with colorful streamers and surrounded by splashing fountains, our courtyard is the ultimate destination for any romantic occasion. Sit under the stars as you enjoy the charming music of our strolling mariachi. Don’t forget to indulge in one of our birdbath margaritas as you listen to the festive tunes! In tasty flavors like strawberry or mango, these drinks are also big enough to share and are sure to get the fiesta started.
With delicious entrees like Tequila Lime Shrimp or Carne Asada Tampiqueña on our fabulous menu, it may be hard to pick just one! Room for dessert? Our Deep Fried Ice Cream is sure to get your appetite going again.
Make this Valentine’s Day an unforgettable one. Fall in love with the taste of Mexico at Casa De Bandini!
Casa de Bandini is gearing up for San Diego Restaurant Week. Come visit us between January 17-24 for delicious deals on festive meals. Check out our special menus below.
Día de los Muertos, also known as Day of the Dead, is a Mexican celebration to remember past family and loved ones. Despite its title, the celebration is a vibrant and colorful tribute to the lives of those who have passed.
Celebrated annually on November 1 and 2, Casa de Bandini will continue the tradition of paying homage to the deceased with an elaborately decorated alter, and offer traditional Day of the Dead dishes such as Chicken Mole Enchiladas.
The festivities will also continue down at Bazaar del Mundo in Old Town. As part of the annual “Tour of Altars,” produced by the Old Town Chamber of Commerce, the Bazaar del Mundo shops will be transformed into a walkable trail of altars, complete with traditional sugar skulls, handmade papier-mâché decorations and guest artists selling Day of the Dead-themed jewelry, handbags, accessories, prints and cards to promote the holiday. Exotic sounds will be provided by Latin American folk group Tinku.
Children and families can enjoy a sugar-skull decorating class on Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. and face painting both days. Hot chocolate, mini churros and coloring sheets will be available for the children, while historical handouts will be provided to adults.
The event will take place Saturday, Oct. 31, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday, Nov. 1, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On Monday, Nov. 2, the Bazaar del Mundo Shops will highlight its alters and offer treats and children’s crafts through closing at 5:30 p.m.
The event is in conjunction with Old Town’s Día de Los Muertos three-day event, from 2 to 9 p.m. Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, which includes “Tour of Altars,” a candlelight procession, face painting and mask decorating throughout Old Town at participating sites.
Parking tips: park for free across the street at Caltrans all day Saturday and Sunday, or take the trolley.
Bazaar del Mundo Shops’ annual Latin American Festival and Mata Ortiz Pottery Market returns to Old Town, July 31 – Aug. 2, to showcase one of the most extensive collections of genuine Latin American folk art, traditional clothing and textiles, colorful collectibles and dazzling jewelry this side of the border.
Mata Ortiz pottery, based on a centuries-old art form renowned for its detailed process and hand-painted geometric and ancestral symbols, will be the highlight of the event with several skilled potters showcasing their wares, including returning artist Jorge Quintana – a principal Mata Ortiz artist whose work has been displayed in museums all over the world.
Live demonstrations will be performed for eager festival-goers, as artists hack away at wooden stumps to reveal life-like animal figures, weave hand-pulled wool into intricate textiles and skillfully paint delicate designs onto hand-formed clay pots.
Other traditional crafts and sought-after handmade goods include: San Antonino embroidery, tinwork, Talavera pottery, Oaxacan wooden animal carvings, Guatemalan weaving, various colorful and symbolic wall art and sculptures, Huichol yarn and bead paintings and one-of-a-kind pottery from the farthest regions of Mexico.
TINKU, a Latin American folk band, will perform over 19 musical rhythms from throughout Latin America on authentic native instruments. Mouth-watering Mexican cuisine from neighboring Casa Guadalajara restaurant will be for sale, completing the cultural aesthetic, making visitors feel as though they’ve stepped into one of Mexico’s rural markets.
The event runs 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Our sister restaurant Casa Guadalajara is celebrating its 20th anniversary next week! While many San Diegan’s have come to call the restaurant their favorite Old Town dining destination, we bet few remember how Casa Guadalajara came to be. In honor of the milestone, here’s a little history behind the restaurant:
Casa Guadalajara was once known as Romaine’s Guadalajara Grill. Upon discovering that Romaine’s former owner intended to cut down a majestic, 250-year-old California Pepper tree on the property to make way for a parking lot, Diane Powers purchased the land and transformed the restaurant into Casa Guadalajara – saving the tree and making it the focal point of the restaurant’s festive courtyard. Casa Guadalajara officially re-opened for business on June 12, 1995.
To celebrate the occasion, Powers and Casa Guadalajara will be throwing a week-long fiesta, with special entertainment including Folklorico dancers, strolling troubadours and mariachis, and special promotions. Starting Monday through Thursday, June 22 to 25, from 4 to 7 p.m., a special “Happier Hour” will take place in the Garden Room with tequila vendors on hand to present a special seminar. Thursday and Friday, June 25 and 26, will feature a special “throwback” menu with five favorite dishes that date back to the original menu, each with a 20 percent discount, and a commemorative T-shirt giveaway provided by Casamigos Tequila.
Come join the party and see why Casa Guadalajara has been a San Diego favorite for the last 20 years!
Join us for Margarita Month! Throughout the month of May, visit Casa de Bandini and try our “Milagro Mexican Belini” margarita – a refreshing blend of Milagro Tequila Silver, Cointreau, white peach syrup, sweet and sour mix, and organic sliced white peaches, shaken and served on the rocks.
Help our delicious drink become #1! Upload a photo of your “Milagro Mexican Belini” on Instagram using the hashtags #MargaritaMonth and #CasadeBandini. You can also rate our drink HERE. Cast your vote for a chance to win $1,000 in gift certificates from participating venues!