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On a sunny day in the South, no cocktail tastes quite as sweet as a mint julep.

For the perfect Southern mint julep, follow these instructions.

mint julep

Pretty Southern Mint Julep:

2 oz. Kentucky Bourbon
1 oz. Simple Syrup — made by boiling 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water, and allowing it to cool before mixing a cocktail
3 Mint sprigs from a backyard garden
1 oz. Soda Water
Crushed Ice

Muddle your mint in crushed ice, though if going for aesthetics be sure to set aside a sprig for garnish. In a cocktail shaker, pour 2 oz. Bourbon, 1 oz. Simple Syrup, and 1 oz. Soda. Shake with chivalry then pour over minted ice.

Thank the stars you’re alive on this fine day and drinking something delicious. Enjoy the races.