Mint Juleps: The Official Drink of the Derby
2 cups water
2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh mint leaves
32 fluid ounces Kentucky bourbon
8 sprigs fresh mint leaves for garnish
1. Combine water, sugar and chopped mint leaves in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. Allow syrup to cool, approximately 1 hour. Pour syrup through a strainer to remove mint leaves
2. Fill eight cups or frozen goblets with crushed ice and pour 4 ounces of bourbon and 1/4 cup mint syrup in each. (Proportions can be adjusted depending on each person’s sweet tooth). Top each cup with a mint sprig and a straw. Trim straws to just barely protrude from the top of the cups. Serve juleps on a silver platter.
Cheers to the Race for the Roses!
“It’s a fantastic scene–thousands of people fainting, crying, copulating, trampling each other and fighting with broken whiskey bottles.” -Hunter S. Thompson
It’s Derby Day once again. The fastest two minutes in sports. My first derby experience was epic. A road trip from Chicago to Kentucky to meet up with my bro, who had made the trek with his fratastic brahs from Vanderbilt. It had poured the Friday before, leaving the infield of The Churchill Downs a 2ft deep mud puddle that stretched nearly a half of a mile long.
Needless to say, there was no staying clean that day–so I was obviously not going to put out any effort to do so i.e. mud wrestling seemed an appropriate choice to honor the day.
It was after this epic moment that I remember something very important. I reached into my bra recalling the ziplock baggies that had been filled with whiskey. You see, you can’t bring any liquid into the derby, so sneaking liquor into the races in peculiar fashions was quite common. My brother had duct taped two catheter-like bags of bourbon to his thighs. I give the plastic a tug, expecting that it would have burst during my muddy plunge, only to pull out a fully sealed bag of Makers Mark.
“This is the coolest you will ever be,” my brother said.