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Weeklong ¡Viva Mexico! celebrations at Zengo, Tamayo and La Sandia

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El Grito -- the day when Mexicans across the world commemorate that country's independence from Spanish rule -- isn't until September 16, but Richard Sandoval, chef-owner of Tamayo, La Sandia and Zengo, is getting an early start on all the celebrations.

Beginning today and continuing though Sunday, September 20, all of Sandoval's metro area restaurants will feature ¡Viva Mexico! menus and cocktails, including a sparkling Mexican sangria and the agave del sol, whose recipe is below.

Agave del sol 3 fresh blackberries 1 1/2 oz Reposado tequila 1 oz sour mix 1/2 bottle ginger beer 1 wedge fresh lime

Muddle the blackberries in a shaker. Add tequila and sour mix and shake. Pour into a rocks glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with lime.

Menu specials include pork carnitas tacos al Jalisco; rock shrimp and octopus ceviche; chile de arbol lobster tacos; pan-seared halibut with a huitlacoche-zucchini tamale; chipotle tamales with chicken; and pan-roasted mero with mole. For more info, or to make a reservation, go to www.modernmexican.com.

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