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The Indelible Connection Between Bourbon and The Kentucky Derby, According to NPR

The Indelible Connection Between Bourbon and The Kentucky Derby, According to NPR

The Kentucky Derby – An Iconic American Event

The Kentucky Derby is one of the most iconic American events that takes place annually on the first Saturday in May at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. This thoroughbred horse race, also known as “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports,” has been around since 1875 and attracts thousands of spectators from all over the world. The Kentucky Derby is not just a racing event; it is a cultural phenomenon that features fashion, food, music, and of course, Bourbon!

Bourbon – The Spirit of Kentucky

Bourbon is America’s native spirit and has been around since the late 18th century. It is a type of whiskey that is made from a mash of at least 51% corn and aged in charred oak barrels. This aging process gives Bourbon a unique flavor and aroma that is unmatched by any other spirit in the world. Kentucky is the birthplace of Bourbon, and the state takes pride in its rich history and tradition of producing this delicious spirit. Bourbon is not only a drink but a way of life in Kentucky.

Bourbon and the Kentucky Derby – A Match Made in Heaven

When it comes to the Kentucky Derby, Bourbon is not just a drink – it is part of the culture. Bourbon and the Kentucky Derby have been intertwined for decades, and the two have become synonymous with each other. The famous drink is not only an essential ingredient in many cocktails that are served at the Derby, but it is also used in cooking. Bourbon is used to create sauces, marinades, and glazes that are used to flavor meats such as ham, pork, and beef.

Mint Julep – The Official Drink of the Kentucky Derby

When talking about Bourbon and the Kentucky Derby, we cannot miss the official drink of the event – the Mint Julep. This sweet and refreshing cocktail is made by mixing Bourbon, simple syrup, and fresh mint leaves. It is served in a metal cup filled with crushed ice and garnished with a mint sprig. The Mint Julep is not just a drink – it is a tradition that has been around since the 1930s. It is estimated that more than 120,000 Mint Juleps are served during the Kentucky Derby weekend.

Sober Derby – A New Trend

While Bourbon is undoubtedly a significant part of the Kentucky Derby, there is a growing trend of people opting for non-alcoholic drinks at the event. The Sober Derby is a new trend that is gaining popularity. Many people who attend the Kentucky Derby now choose to enjoy the event without alcohol and instead opt for drinks such as mocktails, teas, and fruit juices. This trend is not only healthier but also provides an opportunity for people who do not consume alcohol to still enjoy the cultural and social aspects of the Derby.

In Conclusion

The Kentucky Derby and Bourbon are two American icons that have been intertwined for over a century. The event would not be complete without the famous Mint Julep and the rich history of Bourbon would not be the same without the Derby. However, with the rise of the Sober Derby trend, we can see that the culture surrounding the Kentucky Derby is evolving. Whether you choose to enjoy the Derby with or without Bourbon, one thing is for sure – the event will continue to captivate and fascinate people from all over the world for generations to come.

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Written by Dustin Gandoff

Dustin Gandoff is a news reporter and bourbon enthusiast. He has been writing about bourbon for the past five years, and has become an expert in the field. He has traveled to distilleries all over the world to learn more about the craft and to sample some of the finest bourbons available. He is passionate about sharing his knowledge and experience with others, and is always looking for new ways to explore the world of bourbon.

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