Aqua Vitae: Kentucky Derby Edition

Gentleman, start your engines! Oops, wrong race.

Since 1938, the Mint Julep has been the official drink of the Kentucky Derby. Over the course of the two-day festivities over 120,000 will be served at Churchill Downs - a feat that requires over 10,000 bottles of Bourbon, 1,000 pounds of freshly harvested mint and 60,000 pounds of ice.

We don't recommend you drink that many, but enjoying one of these tasty cocktails on Derby Day is a must.

Mint Julep Ingredients:
8 mint sprigs + some for garnish
1 tablespoon of simple syrup
2 ounces of Elijah Craig ($20) (any nice Bourbon will do)

Rinse mint and place in bottom of a julep cup. Gently muddle, then fill with crushed ice. Add one tablespoon of simple syrup and one tablespoon of water. Add Bourbon and stir gently until glass frosts. Garnish with a fresh mint spring and enjoy!

Mint Simple Syrup Ingredients:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 bunch fresh mint sprigs

Combine sugar and water in large pot. Boil for 5 minutes without stirring. Pour mix over a handful of mint leaves, and gently crush the mint with a spoon. Refrigerate overnight. Remove leaves before using.

Now you can't put this iconic drink in any old glassware when Silver Plated Mint Julep Cups ($45) are perfection. Plus when you've finished with all that mint, these double as a lovely flower vase! And if you're lucky enough to have the initials JFC, we're loving these Vintage Kensington Aluminum Monogram Tumblers ($56).

Fun fact - The Kentucky Derby is the oldest continuously held sporting event in the United States, 136 years from 1875 to 2010. That's a lot of Bourbon, and a lot of awesome hats!

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