Off to the Races with a Kentucky Bourbon

Recipe for a Mint Julep


You can serve bourbon straight, with water, over ice cubes or mixed into cocktails like the iconic Manhattan, the Old Fashioned and the very timely Mint Julep, made famous as the drink of choice at the running of the Kentucky Derby the first Saturday in May. Bourbon production is mostly centered in Kentucky, it must be at least 51 percent corn and aged in charred-oak barrels, which adds the characteristic color and flavor. There is no requirement for aging, but most high-end bourbons are aged for six years for longer.

Here’s a simple recipe for the Julep:

Use a pre-chilled dry 12-ounce tall glass or traditional silver cup.

Muddle a few mint leaves in the bottom along with a teaspoon of sugar.

Add 1/2 cup crushed ice, 2 tablespoons filtered water, 2 ounces good-quality (great quality not necessary) bourbon. Stir until the silver cup is frosted (the glass may not frost over). Top with more ice. Serve with a fresh sprig of mint and a short straw to ensure that the imbiber gets a good whiff of mint with each sip.

Lexington Bourbon, 750 ml, 86 proof, $29.99

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