With the Kentucky Derby falling on May 5th, our collective inbox is filled with a confusing mess of cocktail recipes. We’ve got the requisite mint juleps, of course, plus a handful of tequila cocktails for Cinco de Mayo. Then there are the random vodkas and liqueurs trying to get in on the action, but they’re disqualified from this round of contention.

We sifted through the clutter, and below we’ve rounded up a few of the best recipes for the Kentucky Derby and Cinco de Mayo.

That said, should you happen to fashion a delicious tequila julep or bourbon margarita served in a taco shell, be sure to let us know.


cinco de mayo cocktail

Carpe Dia Blackberry Smash Cocktail

2 oz Milagro Añejo Tequila
1 oz fresh lime juice
¾ oz agave nectar
5 Blackberries
2 Sage leaves
3 dashes barrel-aged bitters

Muddle fruit and herbs, add all other ingredients.Shake with ice and strain into rocks glass with ice. Garnish with taragon mint sprig.

Jaja Cocktail

3 oz Tequila REVOLUCION 100 PROOF Silver Tequila
1 oz fresh lime juice
1 oz ginger simple syrup
1 oz club soda
6 mint leaves
3 Cucumber slices

Muddle mint and cucumber with ginger simple syrup. Add tequila and lime juice, then shake with ice. Strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass and top with club soda. Garnish with cucumber slices.

Tamarindo Margarita

2 oz Tequila Avión Silver
1 oz Grand Marnier
1/2 oz lime juice
1/2 oz orange juice
1/2 tsp tamarindo puree
1 tsp sugar

Rim glass with coarse salt and chili powder. Garnish with lime wheel and tamarindo peel.



basil hayden's mint julep


Basil Hayden’s Triple Crown Julep

4 parts Basil Hayden’s® Bourbon
4 chopped Strawberries
10 spearmint leaves
4 lemon wedges
1 part Water
2 tbsp. brown sugar

Muddle brown sugar and water to dissolve sugar. Add chopped strawberries, lemon wedges and mint leaves, and muddle. Add Basil Hayden’s and shake, then add ice and shake again. Strain cocktail over crushed ice and garnish with a mint sprig and strawberry.

Classic Mint Julep

2 oz bourbon
1/2 oz simple syrup or 1 barspoon powdered sugar
8-10 mint leaves

In a Julep cup or rocks glass, lightly muddle the mint and sugar. Add the bourbon and pack tightly with crushed ice. Stir until the cup is frosted on the outside. Top with more crushed ice and garnish with a mint sprig.

Kentucky Colonel

2 oz bourbon
3/4 oz Benedictine
lemon peels

Stir bourbon, Benedictine and lemon peel with ice until cold, then strain into a cocktail glass. Express oils from fresh lemon peel, and drop in.

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