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Try Saying Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Tea And Mint Julep Without Smiling:
June 5, 2002 10:26 AM   Subscribe

Try Saying Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Tea And Mint Julep Without Smiling: it can't be done. Coz June is busting out all over in Bourbon country and the mint is as high as an elephant's eye. For this we all rejoice. But - wait - did you know that, for that most perfect Summer drink, the thirst-quenching nec plus ultra they call the Julep, "the most important ingredient is a T-shirt for the mint juice extraction"? Oh yes! The time has come. Here comes the sun. Mmmm...
posted by MiguelCardoso (23 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
An even better use for fresh mint. (Flash)
posted by groundhog at 10:42 AM on June 5, 2002


Where I grew up, something else was considered the perfect summer drink. P'raps it's because it complimented the ideal summer activity so well. P'raps it's just the difference between American High Culture and, um, Bakersfield.
posted by hob at 10:45 AM on June 5, 2002


You'd better drink the things correctly, though - there's a lot of history beneath those mint leaves.
posted by gleuschk at 11:01 AM on June 5, 2002


I love Bourbon. As a kid my old man was a Bourbon drinker, usually Rebel Yell or Wild Turkey as I recall. I just assumed that the brown stuff was what people meant when they said "liquor", I never trusted the clear booze.
So my ideal cocktail would be a boilermaker of Bookers neat, with a nice cold St Ambroise for a back.

Although that Mickey's does look pretty damn good, hob.
posted by jonmc at 11:03 AM on June 5, 2002


Miguel, I'm all set to try your patented mint julep recipe this summer. Wish me luck. :)
posted by Marquis at 11:04 AM on June 5, 2002


As a kid my old man was a Bourbon drinker, usually Rebel Yell or Wild Turkey as I recall.

You were around when your father was a kid?!
posted by Karl at 11:08 AM on June 5, 2002


Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Tea And Mint Julep.
posted by Sinner at 11:34 AM on June 5, 2002


You were around when your father was a kid?!

PapaMC was quite the tomcat, Karl....
posted by jonmc at 11:39 AM on June 5, 2002


You were around when your father was a kid?!

insert your own Kentucky redneck joke here
posted by briank at 12:01 PM on June 5, 2002


Q: How do you circumcise a Kentuckian?

A: Kick his sister in the chin.
posted by Karl at 12:15 PM on June 5, 2002


I only drink Mint Juleps on Bourbon Street.
posted by rushmc at 12:25 PM on June 5, 2002


Ah yes! Hundreds of sorority chicks puking all over themselves. Fun!
posted by mark13 at 12:49 PM on June 5, 2002


Hasn't this possibility been raised in metatalk before?

And secretly I'm shilling for Slurm, because it does a body good.
posted by drezdn at 1:03 PM on June 5, 2002


oops, wrong thread... Multitasking be damned!
posted by drezdn at 1:19 PM on June 5, 2002


I only drink Mint Juleps on Bourbon Street.

I unwisely ordered a mint julep in Pat O'Brien's (or whatever that really famous bar is called......I can't remember) - it was about the worst I'd ever had. A bunch of sugar syrup made it cloyingly sweet.

I make mine with almost no sugar.
posted by Kafkaesque at 1:25 PM on June 5, 2002


Mint juleps give me heartburn worse than almost any other drink save gin and tonic. The difference is that I am willing to endure the heartburn for a G&T, whilst I am not inclined to do so for a julep.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:46 PM on June 5, 2002


I unwisely ordered a mint julep in Pat O'Brien's

Can't speak to that...I've only had a hurricane there.
posted by rushmc at 2:58 PM on June 5, 2002


So, uh, what's a really kick-ass julep recipe?
posted by five fresh fish at 9:26 PM on June 5, 2002


So, uh, what's a really kick-ass julep recipe?



Add mint as required.
posted by yhbc at 9:37 PM on June 5, 2002


For me, I just put 3 or 4 sprigs of mint in with 3 shots of bourbon (though I have been called a godless heathen for using Gentleman Jack on occasion)...distress the mint (call it names if you like, but most effective is mashing it up with a spoon. Add half a teaspoon powdered sugar, about 1 shot of water, shake with ice.

Pour into your glass...I like to top it up with soda.

Julepy.
posted by Kafkaesque at 10:51 PM on June 5, 2002


You need to drink exactly one mint julep a year, and that's when you're at the derby. Then you're paying $7 for a glass filled with crushed ice and two drops of fake mint julep.

The rest of the year, follow Courier-Journal editor Henry Watterson's julep recipe: “Pluck the mint gently from its bed, just as the dew of the evening is about to form upon it. Select the choicer sprigs only, but do not rinse them. Prepare the simple syrup and measure out a half-tumbler of whiskey. Pour the whiskey into a well-frosted silver cup, throw the other ingredients away and drink the whiskey.”
posted by andrewzipp at 6:39 AM on June 6, 2002


A Really Kick-Ass Mint Julep

You need:

1)Really fresh, just-plucked mint;

2)A good bourbon or sour mash(i.e. Maker’s Mark, Jack Daniel’s, Wild Turkey; nothing too fancy).

3)A lot - and I mean a lot – of crushed ice. If you don't have an ice crusher, wrap fresh icecubes in a clean towel and whack the hell out of them, until they’re powder.

4)Your basic powdered cane sugar(not icing sugar or baking sugar or molasses)

and 5)If you’re a regular at the Kentucky Derby:

A silver cup.


Actually, any metal cup is good, because it frosts beautifully and freezes the whole wrist, which is precisely what’s desired.

I prefer a tall beer mug, but I’m just a despicable furriner.

Now, here's how to go about making it:

1)Strip about fifteen leaves of mint from the mint plant and tear them up, into the cup. Achtung! Do not do this with a knife! Otherwise you bruise the little bastards.

2)Throw in two tablespoons of sugar.

3)Add but a smidgen of the liquor. Just enough to start mashing.

4)Now mash – but truly mash and nuke – the mint, sugar and bourbon until you can’t tell the components apart.

5)According to the excellent article in the link, if you dislike gritty mint in your teeth, you can make a filtered julep by filtering through muslin or any clean cotton cloth. I say "Bah!"

5)The good part, from James Beard’s posthumous recipe: be sure to PULL UP the mixture you’ve pounded all the way up the glass. This syrupy coating will make your Julep good from top to bottom. (Did you know “julep” has no plural? Well, it doesn’t matter).

6)Now fill, but CRAM, truly compact all the ice-powder into the glass. Force it in until it can go no further.

7)Now fill the whole thing with the whiskey.

8)And now the real work begins: with a long spoon start swishing the julep like crazy, until the whole glass really frosts over.

9)When it does, pick up a straw and set yourself down. If not that wimpish, forget the straw and guzzle like a neanderthal.

10)If lazy or, in the meantime, too drunk to even contemplate making another one, you can top up from the handy JD bottle next to you and compromise your integrity with full ice cubes too. At this stage, nobody cares if it’s a genuine julep. Plus, you can say you only had one.


Cheers!
posted by MiguelCardoso at 6:39 AM on June 6, 2002


The Kentucky Derby is a fine tradition which I began taking part in this year. I did try the KD form of Mint Julep, but it was appallingly disgusting and I opted for the beer at subsequent trips to the infield bar. Next year, however, I will be perfecting my mint julep recipe in preparation for the beginning of Spring. How many people go to the Derby regularly? (There was a horse from my hometown in it!)
posted by goneill at 9:18 AM on June 6, 2002


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