3 Cocktails for Kentucky Derby Weekend in the Hudson Valley

Sip on refreshing mint juleps and more as you watch the horse races in May. Don't forget to make these cocktails with Hudson Valley spirits.

Bust out the wide brim hats and don your finest garb. Kentucky Derby weekend is here.

Although the race itself takes place down south, everyone can get in on the excitement thanks to the many Derby-themed brunches and celebrations scattered throughout the Hudson Valley region. Regardless of whether you watch the competition at a local eatery or revel with friends at home, make sure to choose a festive cocktail to sip on during the event. With a fancy hat on your head and one of these drinks in hand, you’ll have everything you need to cheer on your favorite steed.

Mint Julep

As what is no doubt the most popular drink of choice for Kentucky Derby revelers, the mint julep is easy to make and customize to your tastes. Pick up a bottle of Hudson Valley bourbon to mix with shaved ice, simple syrup, club soda or seltzer water, and just the right amount of mint. If you make this at home, serve it in ornate glassware for a cocktail that is bound to impress your guests.

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Whiskey Sour Recipe
What will you be drinking for the Kentucky Derby? Adobe Stock / Photo by J.Pliacushok

Whiskey Sour

If you’re not a fan of mint, opt for a whiskey sour with some Hudson Whiskey and egg whites instead. The beverage, which is a staple on cocktail menus across the country, shines on Derby day. The zingy notes pair wonderfully with Southern barbecue and finger foods.

Nonalcoholic Sweet Iced Tea

For an alcohol-free refreshment, sweet iced tea is just the thing to quench your thirst during the Kentucky Derby races. The southern staple is quick to prepare and requires only a few black teabags (might we suggest Harney & Sons?), water, and sugar. Add a squirt or two of lemon for a zippy treat.

Of course, if you want a peppier sip, sweet tea pairs well with a splash of rum, too.

Related: 11 Restaurants to Visit on the Newburgh Waterfront

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