Thursday, May 1, 2008

Derby Day!

I’m on Good Morning America NOW! Check out my Perfect Kentucky Derby Soiree. Yummm…

The Kentucky Derby is this Saturday. Don’t worry ladies–the “most exciting two minutes in sports” is about a whole lot more than sports.

Do you think I care about horses? Of course not!

But I love any semi-viable excuse to get glammed up, slip into the first sundress of the season and prance around in a big ol’ hat (think Jessica Simpson meets the royal family at Ascot). Oh, and there’s a drink called a Mint Julep…

So I’ve got a plan for all of y’all who aren’t headed to Churchill Downs and Millionaire’s Row.

First: Watch me tomorrow on Good Morning America NOW.(Pictured at left, in the ABC Times Square studios.) I teach New Yorkers a thing or two about bourbon and while Jamie shares his deeelish Derby Day eats. Think mint juleps, bourbon-cured salmon toasts with jicama slaw, gougeres filled with country ham cream…

SecondJoin me on Derby Day at “Bar K” (519 Hudson Street) for those two, sporting minutes that I mentioned earlier. We can laugh at the horse’s names (Pyro? Smooth Brown? Cool Coal Man? What?) and compare hats. Afterward, I’m headed to the James Beard House for the ultimate Kentucky Derby Dinner.

Third: You can’t get out of bed but you still want a nip of the Kentucky Nectar. Fine.

The Perfect Mint Julep
Courtesy of Adam Harris

1 teaspoon simple syrup
4 mint leaves
2 ounces Maker’s Mark bourbon
Mint sprigs
Powdered sugar (optional)

Begin with simple syrup and mint leaves in a silver julep cup, muddle to release the aroma of the mint. Add crushed ice, to fill the cup ½ way and pour in the bourbon and stir until frost forms on the outside of the glass. Add more crushed ice until it is mounded just over the top of the cup. Stick 3-4 bundles ofmint into the center of the ice and insert a straw through the mint all the way to the bottom of the cup. Cut the straw off about 2 inches above the mint and dust the top with powdered sugar. Sipping a julep should be a dual sensory experience- the short straw makes the nose fill the scent of mint while you taste the sweet bourbon.

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