Mint Julep Recipe: A Drink for All May Days
Chris Morris of Woodford Reserve bourbon, gives the best explanation for why this classic recipe works when it's built in the glass and sipped through a mandatory short straw.
Note: I use Maker's Mark, but do use a good Kentucky bourbon and not swill. It's all about the bourbon, with just that hint of mint.
Mint Julep Recipe
• 1 level teaspoon of confectioner's sugar
• 2 to 3 fresh mint leaves.
• Woodford Reserve bourbon or other quality Kentucky bourbon
Put sugar and mint leaves in the bottom of a julep cup (traditional ones are sterling silver). Add about 1/4 teaspoon bourbon. Some recipes call for water, Morris says, but why dillute the drink -- just start with the bourbon.
Muddle together, working the leaves till it's a green sugary paste in the bottom of the cup.
Add crushed ice, almost two-thirds of the way to the top of the cup. At this point, add a fresh mint sprig garnish and a straw, which should be no more than one-half inch over the lip of the julep cup. You want your nose in the cup as you sip - this is crucial.
Tap the ice down firmly. Add two ounces of Woodford Reserve or your bourbon of choice. Then add a layer of loose crushed ice on top.
"Every time you draw a sip through your straw, you draw the bourbon through that ice, and it gets super-cold and runs through that sugar-mint paste and up the straw," Morris said. "So you're actually mixing each sip as you do it. It's delicious that way."Makes 1 serious mint julep.