What to Drink on Derby Day

This Saturday, the 141st Kentucky Derby will take place at Churchill Downs, and whether you’ll be cheering on the horses in person or watching the thoroughbreds race across a screen, chances are you’ll be sipping the Derby drink of choice: the mint julep.  While we love a classic cocktail, we’re always intrigued when they’re prepared with a unique and modern twist. So when our TSG Louisville editors informed us that Euan Watson, mixologist at their city’s acclaimed Bistro 1860, had created a concoction that was a finalist in this year’s Four Roses Bourbon Mint Julep Recipe Contest, we had to try it—and it did not disappoint.

THE Derby Boom Boom

2 oz. Four Roses Bourbon
1/2 oz. Pimm’s no.1
1/2 oz. brown sugar simple syrup
2 dashes rhubarb bitters
Crushed ice
1 silver mint julep cup
2 sprigs of mint

Muddle 1 sprig of mint (8-10 leaves) inside julep cup, making sure to cover all surface area inside. Add crushed ice.
Add bitters, simple syrup, Pimm’s, and, lastly, bourbon. Top off with crushed ice. Add mint for garnish. Sip and enjoy.

This sophisticated yet unfussy take on a typical mint julep is wonderfully refreshing. We enjoyed ours in TSG co-founder Susie Matheson’s engraved silver julep cups, and reading the inscriptions while sipping made the cocktails feel even more special and steeped in tradition.

For those not lucky enough to be in Kentucky this weekend, we highly recommend putting on a fabulous hat and mixing this delicious Derby drink before tuning in to “the fastest two minutes in sports.”

 Bistro 1860 // Louisville, KY // 502.618.1745