Classic Mint Julep

The Mint Julep, a cocktail made with bourbon, sugar, mint, and crushed ice, is most commonly associated with being the signature drink of the Kentucky Derby – Which makes it perfect for our May issue!

Fun fact: This American, 18th century, ice-cold whiskey drink was often consumed as a morning beverage.

The Mint Julep is typically served in a rocks glass or, preferably, a silver julep cup. Since the bourbon is the only liquid in the drink, it is recommended to use a high-quality bottle that you enjoy; we suggest a higher-proof bourbon, such as one in the mid-80s or around 90%, will prevent the crushed ice from diluting the cocktail too quickly.

This recipe, courtesy of San Diego bartender Erick Castro, is a must-try. The combination of a few ingredients results in the ultimate refreshing beverage. 


  • 8 mint leaves
  • 1/4 ounce simple syrup
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • Garnish: mint sprig
  • Garnish: Angostura bitters (optional)


  1. In a Julep cup or rocks glass, lightly muddle the mint leaves in the simple syrup.
  2. Add the bourbon then pack the glass tightly with crushed ice.
  3. Stir until the cup is frosted on the outside.
  4. Top with more crushed ice to form an ice dome, and garnish with a mint sprig and a few drops of bitters (optional).


Original recipe found at