Many will be doing their best to recreate the well-known atmosphere of Churchill Downs this weekend – donning festive hats, incorporating roses and horses in ways big and small, singing traditional songs, and, of course, sipping Mint Juleps.
The “Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports” serves as a great start to warm-weather gatherings. We won’t be able to help with the headgear or thoroughbreds, but fresh mint is available at our Garden Celebration* thanks to a local partnership.
Ordering a Mint Julep has been a tradition enjoyed at the Kentucky Derby for nearly a century. We like to chill our mint julep cups in the freezer before filling with crushed ice to help keep the ice from melting too quickly.
Classic Mint Julep
- 2 ounces bourbon
- 1 tablespoon Mint Simple Syrup (recipe below)
- Sprig of fresh mint to garnish
- Chilled Mint Julep Cup
Fill a julep cup with crushed ice. Add one tablespoon of mint simple syrup and two ounces of bourbon. Stir quickly with a spoon to frost the outside of the cup. Mound with additional crushed ice and garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.
Mint Simple Syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup fresh mint leaves
Heat sugar and water until the sugar is dissolved, about five minutes. Stir in mint leaves and remove from the heat. Allow to cool at room temperature for about an hour. Strain out the mint leaves and keep refrigerated in a sealed container. Mint Simple Syrup will keep, covered and chilled, for about 2 weeks.
*Supplies are limited and selection varies by location. Heinen’s Garden Celebration is not taking place at our Downtown Cleveland Store.