Wet Bar Wednesday – Mint Julep

I’ve heard about this drink for year and have it associated with lazy Kentucky afternoons for some reason.  Not having been to Kentucky on a lazy afternoon or at any other point of any day, ever, I have no idea why.  I suppose because the drink has become somewhat synonymous with the Kentucky Derby.

Origins of this drink are sketchy and variations abound, as with most cocktails.  Essentially it is bourbon whiskey sweetened slightly with a muddled mixture of sugar, water, and fresh mint leaves.

  • 4-6 fresh mint leaves
  • 1 tsp powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp water
  • 2 oz bourbon whiskey

Muddle (a fancy word for smash) the first three ingredients together using a spoon, a muddler, or a mortar and pestle if you’re inclined towards that (which I am).  Pour add the bourbon and shake or mix thoroughly before pouring over ice.

The idea is that the sweetened mint releases essential oils in the muddling process that infuse the whiskey.  I made this for my wife, who seemed pleased enough with it, though we both agreed that we had anticipated it being much mintier than it actually is.  I’ll try this again with other recipes and variations and let you know how those go.  Enjoy!



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