Horseracing and hosting go hand-in-hand but hosting a Derby party doesn’t need to be as extravagant as the hats seen at the track. With traditional southern dishes and twists on the classic mint julep, your guests can celebrate the most exciting two minutes in sports like a local, without pressure on the hostess.

Mimosa Bar: 3 Simple Steps

1) Add fresh herbs and fruit to the bottom of your glass and use muddler or wooden spoon to smash. 2) Top with your favorite fruit juice (I like offering Orange, Cranberry & Pineapple for a nice variation) 3) Top with chilled California champagne and enjoy!

10 Second Mint Julep

  • 3 oz Old Forester Ready to Drink Mint Julep
  • 3 oz crushed ice
  • 1 part mint sprig

Fresh Mint Sprigs

Fresh mint sprigs are a bar cart essential. Mint can add a hint of fresh flavor to any cocktail.

Woodford Berry Punch

This one is a real crowd-pleaser and my go-to bourbon batch recipe. The Woodford Berry Punch is a great introduction to enjoying bourbon and making a simple but delicious drink for your guests.

  • 1 ¼ cups Woodford Reserve bourbon
  • 2 ½ cups cranberry juice
  • 2 ½ oz orange juice
  • 6 diced strawberries
  • 10 basil leaves
  • 6 pinches allspice/sugar blend


Macarons come in various flavors and colors so not only do they taste delicious, but they can brighten up your Kentucky Derby party or brunch and add a touch of elegance.

Horseshoe Name Tags

What you’ll need: Horseshoes Ribbon Chalkboard Tags Chalk Cut ribbon into roughly six inch pieces (enough to tie a bow). Use the ribbon to tie the chalkboard tag around the horseshoe and make a bow. Write the name of each guest on a name tag and either display on a tray or set at each…

Bourbon Bottle Vase

The Kentucky Derby and bourbon go hand-in-hand. Add effortless but festive elements to your party by using empty bourbon bottles as a vase. Simply secure a bow-tie to the neck of the bottle and add your favorite flowers to the bourbon bottle

Bloody Mary Mocktail

A Bloody Mary is a great option for a non-alcoholic drink that tastes and looks great. The garnish skewer still allows that special touch and a meal in a glass.

  • 4 oz Bloody Mary Mix
  • Ice
  • 2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • Hot pepper sauce (to taste)
  • Horseradish (to taste)
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon

Kentucky Benedictine

Benedictine was created in Louisville, Kentucky and was served originally on sandwiches. Now Benedictine is often served as a dip and has become a Kentucky staple and makes for a perfect dish to serve for those quintessential KY occasions like the Derby. 

  • 1 large cucumber (peeled)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 tablespoon onion (grated)
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 2 dashes green jalapeño pepper sauce

Classic Manhattan

  • 2 oz Woodford Reserve bourbon
  • ¾ oz Sweet Vermouth
  • 3 Dashes Angostura Bitters

Summer Mint Julep

  • 2 oz Woodford Reserve Bourbon
  • 4 mint leaves
  • 1 oz Apricot puree/juice
  • 1 oz Elderflower liqueur
  • Garnish with edible flowers. 

Mint Julep Bar

A mint julep bar allows party hosts to be able to enjoy their party as much as the guests and for guests to be able to participate in the festivities. Set out all the ingredients needed to make a traditional mint julep as well as various juices, fruits and herbs for those who want to…

Ginger Julep

  • 1 ½ oz. Woodford Reserve bourbon
  • Juice of half a lime
  • 1 medium piece candied ginger
  • ¼ tsp. molasses
  • 3 oz. lemon soda

Basil Strawberry Julep

  • 3 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 diced strawberries
  • 1 tbsp basil simple syrup
  • Ice (crushed)
  • 2 tbsp Woodford Reserve bourbon

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