Off to the races? Why not up the stakes?
Thanks to Woodford Reserve, this year's official sponsor of the Kentucky Derby, Southern gents and belles can upgrade their well-to-do festivities at Churchill Downs with a seriously fancy cocktail. Sure, everyone will be sipping Mint Juleps on race day, but only the privileged few will be toasting thousand dollar Mint Juleps.
For the 13th year, the small-batch bourbon brand has created a special offering of high-end Mint Julep cups, with an elevated recipe to boot. For a casual $1000, 90 enthusiastic attendees can purchase a Bluegrass Cup, featuring a thoroughbred and jockey, a single rose and the iconic bottle of Woodford Reserve. For an extra grand and a half, 15 big spenders can snag a Commonwealth Cup, which comes completely gold-plated and is accompanied by a silver Woodford Reserve sipping straw. Both keepsakes are presented in wooden boxes lined with silks, like those worn by jockeys.
The cups will be available for purchase starting April 11th, and proceeds will benefit the Jennifer Lawrence Arts Fund. You can only pick them up at the Derby though, so make sure you have a seersucker suit and fancy hat at the ready.
Of course, a cup is nothing unless it runneth over with booze, but you don't actually need a gold-plated creation to sip the brand's special Mint Julep recipe. You do, however, need some roses.
Woodford Reserve® 2018 Kentucky Derby® Mint Julep
2 oz. Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon
1 tsp Kentucky Sorghum Syrup from Woodford County Kentucky
2 Leaves of Kentucky Colonel Mint
Garnish: 3 small red roses, a sprig of mint and a single rose petal from the garland of roses draped on the winning derby horse.
Rub mint around the julep cup, expressing the essential oils. Add remaining ingredients and top with crushed ice made from limestone-filtered water sourced from the Woodford Reserve Distillery. Churn ingredients with a bar spoon distributing the flavor. Top with additional crushed ice and garnish.
[Photos via Woodford Reserve]