Eight Louisville-area bartenders competed at the 15th annual Four Roses Rose Julep Cocktail Competition, in hopes of receiving top honors and bragging rights, for handcrafting the best unique twist on the classic mint julep—which traditionally includes crushed ice, mellow Bourbon, simple syrup and fresh mint, all muddled together in a silver cup.
The competition was held at the Kentucky Derby Festival’s “Festival Unveiled” event on March 15th at Mellwood Arts & Entertainment Center in Louisville, Ky.
A panel of beverage industry experts tasted and scored the juleps based on aroma, creativity, taste and presentation to name the winner in the “Judges’ Choice” category. The public was also invited to sample the eight cocktails throughout the night and cast their votes for the “People’s Choice” category winner.
Proof on Main’s Dane Durand took home the Judges’ Choice award with his “Original Recipe” julep and Martini Italian Bistro’s Colleen McCarthy-Clarke claimed the People’s Choice title for her cocktail, “Two Peas in a Pod.” The Silver Dollar’s Mark Corley was awarded as the winner of the Social Media vote with his “Vanilla Chai Mint Julep”, a category new to 2018. Of course, we wanted to share these award-winning cocktail recipes so that you could handcraft your very own.
Mix Bourbon, ginger lime cordial and ground spice blend over ice. Garnish with flamed mint, powdered sugar and ground spice blend.
Two Peas in a Pod
Colleen McCarthy-Clarke, Martini Italian Bistro
Muddle pea pods, lemon juice, simple syrup. Add mint leaves, Bourbon, Domaine De Canton®, apple puree and bitters. Add ice to tin and shake. Double strain into glass. Garnish with lemon and mint.
Vanilla Chai Mint Julep
Mark Corley, The Silver Dollar
Rub 5 mint leaves inside julep tin and discard. Build tea syrup and Bourbon, add small amount of crushed ice and swizzle. Pack with more crushed ice and cone. Garnish with mint sprig and Cinnamon Toast CrunchTM.
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