Sparkling Mint Juleps – Sweet, aromatic and refreshing summer cocktail. Bourbon, fresh mint syrup and fresh lemon juice.
In Greek mythology, a fetching water nymph named Minthe attracted the attention of Hades, ruler of the underworld. The two engaged in an illicit affair until the goddess Persephone, wife of Hades, found out. Enraged, Persephone (or Demeter, depending on which ancient Greek text you’re reading) transformed Minthe into a fragrant ground-clinging herb that forever bears her name—mint. Lucky for us, the lovely fragrance of Minthe is released into the air whenever the herb is crushed, an aromatic reminder of the water nymph and her charms.
These Sparkling Lemon Mint Juleps are cool and refreshing. The cocktail shares many of the qualities that made Hades fall in love with forbidden Minthe. Serve them individually or in a pitcher, and enjoy the sweet and tantalizing aroma of lemon and mint.
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- 2 1/4 oz fresh mint (three large handfuls), divided
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup chilled fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup chilled bourbon
- 5 cups chilled club soda
- Crushed ice for serving
You will also need
- Saucepan, fine mesh strainer, pitcher, mint julep cups
- This recipe makes enough to fill 8 mint julep cups or 1 pitcher. Set aside 1/3 of the mint leaves. Take the remaining 2/3 of the leaves (1.5 ounces) and roughly chop. You should end up with around 2 cups chopped mint. Place in a saucepan along with the sugar and water. Whisk over medium heat and bring to a simmer, dissolving the sugar. Let the mixture simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Let the mint steep in the liquid until it returns to room temperature. Strain the mint liquid into a pitcher and chill.
- When ready to serve add the remaining mint sprigs to the pitcher, reserving 8 sprigs for garnishing the cups. Stir in lemon juice and bourbon.
- Fill 8 chilled mint julep cups with crushed ice. Pour a little over 1/3 cup of the mint lemon bourbon mixture into each cup. Top off the cups with club soda (about 2/3 cup each) and garnish each with a sprig of fresh mint. Topping off the cups individually in this way will help the club soda retain its refreshing sparkle. Alternatively, if you would rather not deal with making each drink separately, fill the pitcher with ice and fresh mint, then top off the pitcher with the club soda just before serving.