The Savory Pantry and Hamlet & Ghost are getting us in the Kentucky Derby spirit with this winning cocktail recipe.

The southern-inspired bourbon concoction has been promoted by Churchill Downs as the Derby drink of choice since the late 30s, and the root of the recipe goes back a couple centuries before that. The sweet libation was sipped on the expansive porches of the South to help combat the summer heat.

Once considered a drink of the elite, it’s served over ice (an expensive commodity when you don’t have a freezer) in a frosted silver cup. The average julep is much more accessible these days, but the Derby still famously offers a premium glass for a cool $1,000.

While we likely won’t be indulging in juleps iced with spring water from the Alps, Saratoga certainly has the perfect scene for partaking. We have the horses, the history, the hot summers and the penchant for a good cocktail, which is why the Savory Pantry and Hamlet & Ghost have jumped in to make sure we’re doing the rest right.


With the tools and ingredients from the Savory Pantry’s Classic Mint Julep Kit, Hamlet & Ghost mixed us up a tasty version of this time-honored cocktail and they’re sharing the how-to below.



  • 6-7 fresh mint leaves
  • 1 tablespoon simple syrup
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • Crushed ice


  1. Combine 1 tablespoon of simple syrup and a few mint leaves into Julep Cup and gently muddle (We used the Bourbon Barrel Foods Mint Julep Sugar for our simple syrup).
  2. Add a little crushed ice (filling Julep cup about half way)
  3. Add one-and-a-half ounces of bourbon and mix well
  4. Add some more crushed ice (don’t quite fill the cup yet)
  5. Then add another half ounce of bourbon and mix again
  6. Top with crushed ice and garnish with mint leaves