If I’m being totally honest with you, the idea of riding horses kind of freaks me out. They’re so big and full of neighs. And that oat consumption has to lead to some gastrointestinal distress that will leave my nose begging for mercy.

In all seriousness, they are huge, powerful animals and I’m just really not comfortable around something that strong with that small of a brain. I feel like if a storm rolls in, and a clanging peal of thunder rolls down from the heavens, Mr. Ed is just a little bit too likely to lose his shit and buck me right off. Boom…broken neck. No thanks.

Now, you might be thinking, “OK. So you don’t like riding horses. Does that mean you don’t enjoy watching them race, drinking delicious drinks, and maybe laying a few shekels on the line?”

Dear reader, OF COURSE it doesn’t mean that! I am American after all. And what American doesn’t have at least a small degree of fascination with the Kentucky Derby (just 10 days away!)?

The pageantry. The history. The hats. The trip to the OTB where I’m reminded how happy I am that I’m not the kind of guy that regularly goes to the OTB. And, of course, the Mint Juleps. Oh baby, the Mint Juleps.

What other cocktail offers such an appealing blend of minty sweetness? It’s like I’m catching a buzz off of frothy toothpaste, but way, way better than that. I keep my Julep cup in a place of honor in my cocktail glassware cabinet. It sits there, chalice-like, all year, just waiting for the day that I’ll pull it off the shelf, fill it up with Early Times and spearmint, and slam down a few rounds of minty magnificence while speaking in an affected Southern drawl like Francis Underwood.

Copper Julep Cup

Nickel Julep Cup

Really, the Kentucky Derby is a great excuse to have some friends over and enjoy a cocktail that you probably wouldn’t think to enjoy on most other days. If you can organize a small pool where you all throw a few bucks on the line, that’s all the better. Trust me, you’ll have a good time. So go ahead and stock up on Mint Julep cups and other party supplies today so that you’re ready to go on Saturday May 3rd.

Mint Julep Kit