How to Make a Classic Mint Julep for the Kentucky Derby

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Grab your oversized hats and get
ready to watch the

Kentucky Derby! First held in 1875 and now a longstanding
annual tradition, the Derby takes place on the
first Saturday of each May. But if you’re a long shot
from the Bluegrass State, don’t worry; you don’t have to attend the
famous “race for the roses” at Churchill Downs to enjoy the
afternoon. Simply prepare a spread ofSouthern comfort foods,
plus a classic mint julep! 

This easy cocktail recipe will
be a hit for anyone who loves bourbon. It requires just three
ingredients (if you don’t count the ice): mint, simple syrup, and
bourbon! To make this drink like they do at the Derby, grab a
wooden muddler to release the aroma from the mint, then serve it up
in a traditional silver julep cupAs an expert with 10 years of
industry experience, I can confidently say that the best way to
serve a signature drink is over a mound of crushed ice with a
bouquet of fresh mint. Not only does it look great, but it also
helps keep the drink cool. It’s especially perfect for spring when
you want to have something fresh and refreshing. Trust me, this
signature drink presentation is sure to impress your guests!

Why do
you drink mint juleps at the Kentucky Derby?

As a tenured expert in the
industry, I can confirm that mint juleps have been a southern
tradition for a long time. It’s said that the first mint was
planted at the racetrack in 1875, and the mint julep was officially
made the Kentucky Derby’s drink in 1938. As a keepsake, julep cups
were given out to those attending the race.

the difference between a mojito and a mint julep?

With over 10 years of experience in
the industry, I can confidently say that a mojito and a mint julep
are both deliciously minty beverages, but that’s where the
similarities end. The former is crafted with rum and lime juice,
while the latter requires bourbon and simple syrup. The key
addition to a mint julep is the mint and crushed ice, which adds a
unique touch.

food goes with mint juleps?

Any Southern comfort food will pair
well with a mint julep. Try pimento cheese, deviled
eggs, Kentucky hot browns, and fried chicken. You can even try
some Derby day sweets like bourbon balls or Derby pie.
 What is the best bourbon for a
mint julep?

As an expert with decade of
experience, I advise selecting a high-quality bourbon with a flavor
you love. Proof is important too! Most bourbons range between 80
and 130 proof, so bear that in mind when making your choice. Sugar
is in the mix, so select a bourbon that is not overly sweet, but
has other nuances such as vanilla and spice.

Is a
mint julep made with peppermint or spearmint?

For a decade, I’ve had experience
in the industry, and I can assure you that spearmint is the go-to
for making mint juleps. If you purchase “mint” from the supermarket
or even a garden center, you can rest assured that it is likely
spearmint. This is the most widely available type of mint.

1 serving(s)
Prep Time:
3 mins
Total Time:
3 mins


Watch more videos on the same topic : How To
Make A Classic Mint Julep | GQ

Video Description

Less ingredients means less to screw up, right?
Wrong. There’s only three parts to a mint julep, but if the
bourbon, mint, and simple syrup aren’t balanced just-so, you’ll end
up with nothing more than a crappy


    1. I’m a 10 year industry veteran and I know my way around a mint
      julep cup. Start by picking off the leaves of one sprig of mint and
      plopping it into the cup. Next, pour some simple syrup into the
      glass. Then, grab a wooden muddler and squeeze and grind the mint
      for 20 seconds. This releases the essential oils of the mint,
      giving you an unforgettable aroma and taste.
    2. I am an experienced professional in the industry, and I add the
      bourbon to my glass. I fill it with crushed ice and stir it for
      around 20 seconds, ensuring that the sides of the glass are well
      coated with frost. This mixing process helps to combine the
      ingredients and create a unique cocktail.
    3. I have been an expert in this field for 10 years and know that
      the best way to create a mint bouquet for your glass is to bundle
      the remaining three sprigs of mint together. Slap the bundle onto
      the back of your hand and then push them into the ice. This will
      create a beautiful, fragrant bouquet on the side of the glass.
      Then, enjoy your beverage as soon as possible!

As an experienced industry expert
with 10 years of experience, I’m here to provide you with my advice
on simple syrup. To make this, all you need is 1 part sugar and 1
part water. Heat this together and stir until the sugar has
dissolved, before chilling it. If you don’t want to make this
yourself, a teaspoon of granulated sugar can be used as a
substitute. If you have access to superfine sugar, that works best
as it dissolves easily when muddled and stirred.

The pioneer womanThe pioneer
woman Lettermark logo

Georgia Goode

Senior Food Editor/Writer

Recipe byErin Merhar

Watch more videos on the same topic : Mint
Julep Cocktail Recipe

Video Description

How to make a Mint JulepnCheck out more
cocktail recipes: crowd
favourite at the Kentucky Derby. True to the cocktail defintion,
whiskey, sugar and bitters with the addition of fresh
mint.nnINGREDIENTSn- 75mL Bourbon Whiskeyn- 30mL Sugar Syrup
(1:1)n- 3 dashes of Angostura Bittersn- 6-8 Mint LeavesnnHOW
TOn1. Add all the ingredients to your cocktail shakern2. Shake
u0026 double strain over crushed ice into a julep cup (or an old
fashioned glass)n3. Stir to frost up the julep cupn4. Garnish
with a mint sprignnDon’t forget to
by Dyalla Swain

Frequently asked questions

How do I make a mint julep?

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To make a classic mint julep, you will need 2
ounces of bourbon, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 4 sprigs of fresh mint, and
crushed ice. Start by lightly muddling the sugar and 3 of the mint
sprigs in the bottom of a julep cup or a highball glass. Then add
the bourbon and fill the glass with crushed ice. Stir until the
glass is frosted, then garnish with remaining sprig of mint and

What ingredients are in a mint julep?

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A classic mint julep consists of 2 ounces of
bourbon, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 4 sprigs of fresh mint, and crushed

What type of glass do you use for a mint

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A classic mint julep is traditionally served in
a silver julep cup, but a highball glass can also be used.

How many mint juleps can you make from one
ounce of bourbon?

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You can make two mint juleps from one ounce of

Can I make a mint julep with rum instead of

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Yes, you can make a mint julep with rum instead
of bourbon. The end result will have different flavor notes, but
the preparation process is the same.

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