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Cocktail of the Week: The Mint Julep (And Where You Can Enjoy It in San Antonio) 

click to enlarge ERIN WINCH
  • Erin Winch

With the Kentucky Derby coming up this Saturday, it seems only fitting that the cocktail of the week be a mint julep. The julep — crafted by combining 2 ½ ounces of whiskey, a ½ ounce of simple syrup, and about 4 or 5 sprigs of mint then loaded with crushed ice — is the official cocktail of the two-minute sport. While it is not a complicated drink by any means, it is incredibly refreshing and is one of the more famous classic cocktails, rivaling the Moscow Mule in that it demands to be served in its own signature julep tin.

There aren’t very many bars in San Antonio that typically carry the drink on their menu (maybe the unique glasses are just too much?), but the cocktail makes a few appearances for Derby Saturday.

This year there are four bars that have announced a special menu during the game. Jason Dady’s Range, The Modernist, The Rustic, and Hotel Emma’s Sternewirth have already announced they will feature the cocktail as a special during the race, so grab your flounciest hat.

Range will be hosting a party from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday with some Derby-themed bites and one julep for $30. The Modernist will be making juleps using Woodford Reserve while showing the game at the homey bar. If you are looking for a larger scale event, Dallas-based The Rustic will feature their version of a julep which includes brandy, along with Derby food favorites such as Hot Brown sandwiches, open-faced sammies topped with turkey, bacon, tomato slices, gravy and cheese. Sternewirth will host an event, Race for the Roses, for $25 per person. The entry fee includes two juleps and “Southern-Inspired” bar bites, with a cash bar available as well.

If you’re searching for a big shindig, Seersucker Distillery is throwing a Cinco De Derby party at their 5,000 square-foot facility. The event runs from noon to 6 p.m. and features Cinco and Seersucker cocktails, tours of the distillery, lawn games and food for purchase from Guerrilla Gourmet. Because the distillery is known for their botanicals, they'll feature a gin julep with 25 percent of the proceeds going to SNIPSA.

So many restaurants, so little time. Find out the latest San Antonio dining news with our Flavor Friday Newsletter.

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January 12, 2022

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