The 140th running of the Kentucky Derby takes place Saturday, May 3 at Louisville’s famed Churchill Downs Racetrack. Didn’t score a ticket or an invite? No worries—put on your finest hat and mix up a cocktail. While “The Run for the Roses” is all about the mint julep, you don’t have to keep to tradition. Here are a few recipes to consider.
Blackberry Mint Julep Margarita
2 parts Milagro Anejo tequila
1 part Lime juice
1 part Honey syrup
6 Mint Leaves
Muddle berries and mint. Add rest, shake and strain over ice in julep glass. Garnish with blackberries and mint sprig.
The mixologists at Milagro created this recipe.
Georgia Peach Julep
1 1/3 oz. Bulleit bourbon
2/3 oz. Peach Brandy
1 tsp. granulated sugar
5-6 mint leaves
Muddle mint leaves, sugar, and splash of water in a julep cup or rocks glass. Add Bulleit Bourbon, peach brandy, splash of water, and fill cup with crushed ice (10-20% above rim of cup, like a snow cone) and stir. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint and peach slice, add a small drinking straw, and serve with a napkin.
King Cocktail, and president of the Museum of the American Cocktail, Dale DeGroff shared this recipe.
4 parts Basil Hayden’s bourbon
8 parts Blueberry juice
8 parts Passion Fruit juice
Sparkling wine or club soda
Fresh mint leaves
Add bourbon, blueberry juice, passion fruit juice and ice in a cocktail shaker and shake. Top with club soda or sparkling wine
Note: You can make a blueberry ice ring by freezing one bag of frozen blueberries with water in a bunt cake pan. Dip frozen ring into hot water for a few seconds to unmold. Place in punch bowl with blueberry side up.
The mixologists at Beam created this recipe.
2 oz. Lillet Rosé
½ oz. Green Chartreuse
Rub 2 to 3 mint leaves inside of a julep cup, then discard leaves. Add Chartreuse and Lillet Rosé, fill midway with crushed ice, swizzle or stir to agitate and incorporate, then add more crushed Ice. Top with spanked mint sprigs.
Joaquin Simo of Pouring Ribbons in New York created this recipe.