Mint juleps evoke visions of fancily clad southern folk, lounging on an open covered porch on a steamy summer day, lazily sipping on the iced beverage. Popularized by the Kentucky Derby, the cocktail is commonly served across America on the first Saturday in May-Kentucky Derby Day.
Mint juleps were first served at the opening of Churchill Downs in 1816. It was so well received it became their signature drink in 1875.
The classic mint julep is prepared with bourbon and mint syrup and is likely one of the better known of the bourbon cocktails. Though traditionalists may gasp, it can be made with vodka as well.
What Is In a Mint Julep with Vodka?
The mint julep is a classic whiskey drink, so though you may substitute the bourbon or whiskey with vodka, the substition is similar to making a whiskey sour with vodka-it really isn’t the same drink.
- 2 oz vodka
- 4-6 sprigs of mint
- 2 tablespoon mint syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 2 sprigs of mint
How to Make a Mint Julep with Vodka
Fill a drink tumbler with cracked ice.
Add mint sprigs and shake gently to release the flavors.
Add the vodka and mint syrup and tumble until the drink is chilled.
Pour into an ice-filled glass and serve.
Mint Syrup: In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the sugar and water and cook until the sugar is dissolved, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add the mint, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
Nickell, Joe. The Kentucky Mint Julep . Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 2003. Print.
Givens, Ron. Bourbon at Its Best: the Lore and Allure of America’s Finest Spirits. Cincinnati, OH: Emmis Books, 2005. Print.