Mint Juleps are a classic drink that has been around since the 1700s. This drink is the perfect blend of ingredients needed to survive a hot southern day. All you really need for a traditional mint julep is mint, sugar, ice, and bourbon. This simple guide will show you the measurements and instructions you need to make the perfect mint julep for any occasion.
The key to a good mint julep is all in the ingredients. Pick the freshest mint and a quality bourbon to get the best results, and remember that a higher proof bourbon works better when blended with ice. For a classic, single-serving sized mint julep, you will need:
• 10 mint leaves plus a small spring for a garnish
• 1 sugar cube or 1 ½ teaspoons sugar
• Crushed ice
• 1 tablespoon water or seltzer water
• 2 ½ ounces Kentucky bourbon
• Muddler or handle of a wooden spoon
(Spearmint is the traditional choice in Southern states, but it is all a matter of personal taste. If you prefer regular mint or a flavored variant like lemon mint, feel free to give it a try.)
1. Put your mint leaves in the bottom of your glass and gently top them with the sugar.
2. Muddle the mint to break down the leaves and dissolve the sugar, but do not over-muddle the leaves or they make taste bitter.
3. Add enough finely crushed ice to fill your glass until three quarters of the way full.
4. Top the glass with the water and bourbon, and stir the mixture lightly to combine the ingredients.
5. Add a mint sprig as a garnish and sip and savor.
(Traditionally, mint juleps are served in a silver, pewter, or stainless steel cup. However, if you do not have the classic angled metal cup available, a standard old fashioned glass will work well with this recipe. Another part of the essential mint julep instrument list is usually a muddler, but it is fine if you do not have one on hand. The handle of a wooden spoon, a wooden meat mallet, or even a pestle can work fine for crushing the mint.)