The Derby Cocktail
- 1 1/2 Ounce Buffalo Trace Bourbon
- 1/2 Ounce sweet vermouth
- 1/2 Ounce orange curaçao
- 3/4 Ounces lime juice
Combine bourbon, curaçao, vermouth, and lime and shake and strain into martini glass. Garnish with lime wheel and mint sprig.
Calories Per Serving167
Folate equivalent (total)2µg1%
Have a question about the nutrition data? Let us know.
WOODFORD RESERVE MINT JULEP MILKSHAKE
“As a kid growing up in America ice cream floats were a staple of my childhood. They were always part of sleepovers with my grandparents and this reminds me of those better times. You can’t help but have a little smile on your face when you enjoy this cocktail. As the world’s number one premium bourbon whiskey, Woodford Reserve can be found in any market. And with a proof of 90.4 you can taste it through the ice cream—but it’s also not going to take over and dominate the drink.” —Michael Toscano, Woodford Reserve New York City brand ambassador
1.5 oz. Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon
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2 scoops vanilla ice cream (alternative: mint chocolate chip ice cream)
0.75 oz. Woodford Reserve mint simple syrup
Fresh mint sprigs, for garnish
Grated dark chocolate, for garnish
Method: Build all ingredients in a tall glass and top with the Q Kola. Garnish with large sprig of fresh mint, and grated dark chocolate. Use a paper straw to enjoy.
“The pineapple julep is hands down the best of all worlds for this year’s Derby. Not only is it delicious and crafted with easy-to-find ingredients, the components are a fresh perspective on such a classic cocktail. Pineapple is the universal symbol for hospitality: perfect for welcoming guests to your home soirée. Ginger syrup spice takes us into early autumn and balances out the crisp, cooling mint.” —Jackie Zykan, master taster at Old Forester
2 oz. Old Forester 100 Proof
1 pineapple slice, muddled
1 pineapple slice, for garnish
Method: Combine in a double old-fashioned glass, muddle and top with crushed ice. Swizzle to chill.
“Although I created it specifically for the Breeders’ Cup, the Torrie Cup is the perfect cocktail to enjoy while watching all of this year’s big races (like the upcoming Kentucky Derby) from home: It’s simple yet complex. And all of the ingredients can easily be found at your local grocery and liquor stores. In fact, every time I go to make one, I’m relieved to find that I already have everything I need right in my kitchen! The name Maker’s Mark is synonymous with high-quality bourbon and it sets the tone for this potent, yet refreshing libation, which combines the classic pairing of whiskey and sweet vermouth with the lighter elements of lemonade and orange juice. Not too strong, sweet, or fruity, this is my go-to drink for tuning into sporting events like the Breeders’ Cup and the Run for the Roses!” —Mark Tubridy, bartender and mixologist at the 21 Club, New York City
1.5 parts Maker’s Mark bourbon
Method: Combine all ingredients in a mixing tin. Add ice, shake vigorously, and strain over fresh ice in a wine glass or goblet. Garnish with a lemon wheel.
“Funnily enough, Old Forester is the first bourbon I’ve ever tried and I found out recently that it was also the first bourbon ever bottled in the world! I’ve tried many bourbons since, but nothing quite compares to the robust yet elegant flavor profile from this entire portfolio of bourbons. My favorite in particular is the 100, as I’ve never had a spirit with a high ABV that tasted so smooth. It’s ideal for mixing cocktails, especially the Chambord Sangria. It’s my choice for an elevated Derby cocktail: It still captures the essence of a Julep with Old Forester 100 and mint. And the addition of Chambord adds a layer of black raspberry and vanilla, which makes the drink far more interesting! The cocktail also has a touch of fresh grapefruit and hibiscus tea, making it a refreshing and easy sipping Derby drink—whether you’re celebrating in Kentucky or safe at home.” —Deena Sayers, bartender and beverage consultant
1 oz. Old Forester 100 Proof
1 oz. fresh grapefruit juice
Method: In a shaker tin, rip the mint leaves into small pieces. Combine all the remaining ingredients and shake well. Double strain into a wine glass over fresh ice and garnish with grapefruit slices and a mint sprig.
“When creating the Clara Bow, I took inspiration from the speakeasies of the Prohibition Era. Bartenders had to resort to combining whatever sweeteners were available to them to create something drinkable especially with spirits of questionable quality. With all of us spending much more time at home these days, and maybe trying our hand at creating cocktails using what’s left in our home bar carts, this cocktail is perfect for mixing something up for the Derby using that bourbon you’ve had lying around at home waiting for the perfect moment.” —Lynnette Marrero, co-beverage director at Wonderbar, Beacon, New York
0.5 oz. St. Germain elderflower liqueur
Method: Combine all cocktail ingredients except for the mint sprig in a shaker. Add 4 to 5 ice cubes and shake vigorously. Using a Hawthorne strainer and a fine-mesh strainer, pour the contents into a coupe. Garnish with mint sprig.
1. Keeneland Breeze
Louisville may have the international attention every year, but Lexington’s Keeneland Race Track has plenty of tradition of their own to share with the world. Our favorite part: the Kenneland Breeze cocktail, a simple and refreshing cocktail featuring Maker’s Mark.
- 1-1/4 oz. Maker’s Mark Bourbon
- Splash DeKuyper Orange Curacao Liqueur
- Spash ginger ale
- Orange wedge for garnish
Fill rocks glass with ice. Add Maker’s Mark Bourbon, a splash of DeKuyper Orange Curacao Liqueur and a squeeze of fresh orange. Top off with ginger ale. Garnish with an orange wedge.
Kentucky Derby 2021: 5 Cocktail Recipes To Make At Home
Horse racing's biggest event, the Kentucky Derby, returns on May 1. The first leg of the Triple Crown is back at its traditional time after the 2020 race was delayed until the fall and without any spectators.
An attendance of 23,000 is expected at Churchill Downs this year due to limited seating. The 147th Run for the Roses may still conjure the feel and emotion of races before the pandemic.
Here are five easy cocktails to make on race day.
Mint Julep Cocktail
- 2 oz Nelson’s Green Brier Tennessee Whiskey
- .5 oz demerara simple syrup (1:1 demerara sugar to water)
- 2 dashes aromatic bitters
- 4 mint leaves
Mint bouquet for garnishGently muddle mint leaves in the bottom of a julep tin, pulling the leaves up the side of the tin. Add whiskey, demerara syrup and bitters. Fill the tin about ¾ of the way with crushed ice and swizzle with a bar spoon until condensation forms on the outside of the tin. Top with additional ice to form a snow cone on top and garnish with a bouquet of mint.
An light cocktail that'll make you feel like you're at the Kentucky Derby. Photo: Alexanndria Welch
Woodford Reserve Cherries & Cream Julep
- 2 oz Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon
- .5 oz cherry juice
- Half a vanilla bean pod (cut into small segments)
- 1 tsp. powdered sugar
- Mint sprig, cherry and vanilla bean pod for garnish
- Crushed ice
In the julep cup, add .5 oz cherry juice. Add half a vanilla bean pod cut into small segments. Add 1 tsp. of powdered sugar. Muddle or mix together. Add crushed ice to 2/3 of the cup. Add 2 oz of Woodford Reserve. Top off the cup with crushed ice. Garnish with a mint sprig, real cherry, and vanilla bean pod, according to the Kentucky Derby website.
A Sage Once Said.
- 1.5 oz Nelson’s Green Brier Tennessee Whiskey
- .5 oz Licor 43
- .5 oz blackberry simple syrup
- 2 dashes orange bitters
- Fresh sage leaves
An light cocktail that'll make you feel like you're at the Kentucky Derby. Photo: Alexanndria Welch
Add three sage leaves and two dashes of orange bitters to the bottom of a julep tin. Gently muddle, pulling the leaves up so the oils coat the inside of the tin. Add blackberry syrup, Licor 43 and Tennessee Whiskey. Fill about ¾ of the way with crushed ice and swizzle with a bar spoon until ingredients are combined and the outside of the tin begins to frost. Top with more crushed ice to make a “snow cone” top and garnish with additional sage.
Finlandia Apple Cider Mule
- 1 1/2 oz. Finlandia® Classic Vodka
- 3 oz. apple cider
- Ginger beer
- Cinnamon sticks for garnish
Thanks to its 3-ingredient recipe list, this Apple Cider Mule has all the makings of your favorite Fall cocktail. Start with 1.5 oz of Finlandia Vodka, add 3 oz. of apple cider and a splash of ginger beer. Garnish with cinnamon sticks, according to the Kentucky Derby website.
- 1.5 oz. Ketel One™ Vodka
- 0.5 oz. fresh lime juice
- 0.75 oz. fresh pink grapefruit juice
- 0.3 oz. pomegranate syrup
- 8 mint leaves
- 0.3 oz. honey syrup
Combine the first five ingredients in a mixing glass before stirring in the honey syrup. Add ice and shake. Strain into a julep cup or Collins glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with a large sprig of mint and grapefruit twist.
An light cocktail that'll make you feel like you're at the Kentucky Derby. Photo: Alexanndria Welch
Authentic #18, ridden by jockey John Velazquez leads the field to the first turn during the 146th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on September 05, 2020 in Louisville, Kentucky. Photo: Rob Carr/Getty Images
Simple Decoration Ideas for the Kentucky Derby
Since the Kentucky Derby is known as the Run for the Roses, roses are a must! We used Lenten Roses to make a beautiful arrangement for the bar. They’re an early spring rose that are just stunning in shades of purple, pink and white!
Traditionally the Derby is associated with red roses but truly any type of rose will work. Purchase pink, white or red roses at your local Farmer’s Market or grocery store. Then add the flowers to a vase for easy Kentucky Derby decor.
You can also make a pretty rose garland to drape over a bar cart too.
Mini Horse Shoes
Add mini metal horse shoes around the bar for a super simple and charming Derby-inspired idea. We purchased them here and they’re perfect for crafts, garland or to just place on a table.
Shop Antique Stores
Antique stores are a great option to find golden silver vases and decorative items. They usually carry inexpensive brass and silver vases and trays that you can use for the party.
We found a charming vase which resembles a trophy and filled it with roses. It’s perfect for a Kentucky Derby party.
Cocktail picks are a great way to add charm to a cocktail. It’s all about the details! We found these adorable horse picks and they were perfect for our gold-themed Derby party.
The Kentucky Derby’s Woodford Spire Cocktail Recipe
Step 1: Combine the bourbon, lemonade and cranberry juice in a rocks glass filled with ice.
Step 2: Stir the mixture, garnish with the lemon twist and serve.
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6 Friends-Inspired Cocktails For Your Reunion Viewing Party
Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.
In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.
Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.
The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.
Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)
What We're Looking For: Digital print and pattern designs that reflect your design aesthetic. Think optimistic, hopeful, bright — something you'd want to see inside your home.
How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.
Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.
For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!
This Killer Kentucky Derby Cocktail Could Unseat the Mint Julep—Here's How to Make It
Bourbon fans be aware: we may see a cocktail upset at the Kentucky Derby in the next few years. In just two years, a single cocktail has closed the gap on more than a century of the Mint Julep’s iconic reign over the Derby. The “Spire” is coming up fast on the legendary drink of Churchill Downs.
As signature cocktails go, the Spire is a weird and wonderful Frankenstein of a summer cocktail, half Cape Codder half Bourbon Lemonade, all deceptively refreshing.
It so happened that I attended the Derby in the Spire’s debut year (2018) and, after partaking in the requisite ritualistic Mint Julep consumption early in the day, I ended up leaning in on Spires through the rest of a very muddy race day.
I wasn’t alone, and I can’t recommend it enough. For context, Churchill Downs typically sells around 120,000 Juleps each year during the Kentucky Derby. In the last two years, the Spire has hit annual sales of 80,000 (I’m not sure how many of those I was responsible for, but it’s definitely less than half).
Point being: the Spire is fast on the Julep’s heels.
It’s gaining for a couple of reasons, but the most obvious draw is that mint and sugar can wear on the stomach after just a couple of hours. Unless you’re breaking things up with water breaks, you can’t sustain a day of infield day drinking on Juleps alone—it’s too much mint and sugar.
Cranberry and lemonade, on the other hand? That’s a sunrise to sunset combination. And as perfect as the ratios may be on paper, this drink is very forgiving if you want to dial up the cranberry—or the bourbon.
Don’t worry—the good news is that this cocktail is equally at home in a nice julep cup, so you’ll still get to use those occasion-only pewter or copper vessels just like always.
Mixing one (or ten) of these up at home is simple, and you’ve probably got most of the ingredients on hand. Raise one for the 2020 Derby if you wish, but try this one out after the roses have been handed over—it’ll take you all the way to the end of summer.
Serving the Brown Derby as a brunch drink
Some people say the Brown Derby is a brunch drink: likely because it contains grapefruit. But we can’t necessarily say we recommend 3 ounces of whiskey for brunch! If you’d like to use it for brunch, we’d recommend diluting it with soda water to make it into a highball cocktail or a spritzer. Here’s what to do:
- Make up a mix that’s 3 or 4 times the recipe below. Estimate that 1 serving below equals 2 servings of the diluted drink.
- Pour it into glasses using equal parts Brown Derby mix and soda water.
The Best Kentucky Derby Cocktail Recipes
The first Saturday of every May is reserved for a 145-year-old tradition: the running of the Kentucky Derby. Men suit up in seersucker, women cap themselves in fascinators, and they all hold Mint Juleps in-hand. Like the outfits, certain cocktails are markedly more elaborate than others. Woodford Reserve, the official bourbon of the race, has made a splash over the past decade, offering specialty Juleps at the event for upwards of a $1000 a pop. What goes into such a high-priced tipple? Let's take a look.
This year's $1K Mint Julep contains 2oz. of Woodford Reserve straight bourbon and locally sourced honey sweetener, garnished with fresh mint and a honeycomb. Nothing too out of the ordinary in that recipe. The drink's serving vessel is what truly sets it apart: a silver cup, with the famous spires of Churchill Downs etched into its metallic exterior. If that isn't fancy enough for you, there's a $2500 variation poured into an actual golden cup.
All of this opulence is for a good cause. The proceeds from the cups will go to the John Asher Memorial Scholarship Fund at Western Kentucky University, in honor of the Louisville native who worked at Churchill Downs racetrack for more than twenty years.
The Kentucky Derby airs Saturday, May 4th at 2:30PM ET on NBC. And if you're celebrating at home, there are a number of ways to impress guests with a standout drink preparation. It might even lead to a photo finish. Spice things up with these riffs that move the cocktail into an entirely unexpected direction.