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I know there are a few folks here that appreciate the ponies and the tradition.

Everybody knows the Mint Julep is the drink of the day. This drink can only be made with Kentucky bourbon (no Canadian blends or Tennessee mash). However I think not many know this bit of history about said drink.

It's a bit long but my southern brothers would agree it's worth the read. Enjoy


The Mint Julep, a distinctive Southern drink, popular in the ante bellum South right up through modern times, is a mixture of water, sugar, mint leaves and, above all, bourbon whiskey. While it can be purchased today in modern drinking establishments in the South, those served there bear little resemblance to those served in the home. The serving of this elixir to family and guests on a hot summer afternoon was, and is, accomplished with the greatest fanfare and flourish to show respect for those receiving it. It is as much of a ceremony as it is a drink.
The following is a copy of a letter from Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner, Jr., USA [(VMI-1906, West Point-1908) killed on Okinawa June 18, 1945] to Major General William D. Connor, [Superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point] dated March 30, 1937. Buckner Jr. was the son of General Simon Bolivar Buckner of the Confederate army who surrendered Fort Donelson to General Grant, thus giving Grant his nickname of "Unconditional Surrender" Grant. This letter clearly demonstrates the esteem in which a "Mint Julep" is held.

My Dear General Connor:
Your letter requesting my formula for mixing mint juleps leaves me in the same position in which Captain Barber found himself when asked how he was able to carve the image of an elephant from a block of wood. He said that it was a simple process consisting merely of whittling off the part that didn't look like an elephant.
The preparation of the quintessence of gentlemanly beverages can be described only in like terms. A mint julep is not a product of a formula. It is a ceremony and must be performed by a gentleman possessing a true sense of the artistic, a deep reverence for the ingredients and a proper appreciation of the occasion. It is a rite that must not be entrusted to a novice, a statistician nor a Yankee. It is a heritage of the Old South, and emblem of hospitality, and a vehicle in which noble minds can travel together upon the flower-strewn paths of a happy and congenial thought.
So far as the mere mechanics of the operation are concerned, the procedure, stripped of its ceremonial embellishments, can be described as follows:
Go to a spring where cool, crystal-clear water bubbles from under a bank of dew-washed ferns. In a consecrated vessel, dip up a little water at the source. Follow the stream thru its banks of green moss and wild flowers until it broadens and trickles thru beds of mint growing in aromatic profusion and waving softly in the summer breeze. Gather the sweetest and tenderest shoots and gently carry them home. Go to the sideboard and select a decanter of Kentucky Bourbon distilled by a master hand, mellowed with age, yet still vigorous and inspiring. An ancestral sugar bowl, a row of silver goblets, some spoons and some ice and you are ready to start.
Into a canvas bag pound twice as much ice as you think you will need. Make it fine as snow, keep it dry and do not allow it to degenerate into slush. Into each goblet, put a slightly heaping teaspoonful of granulated sugar, barely cover this with spring water and slightly bruise one mint leaf into this, leaving the spoon in the goblet. Then pour elixir from the decanter until the goblets are about one-fourth full. Fill the goblets with snowy ice, sprinkling in a small amount of sugar as you fill. Wipe the outside of the goblets dry, and embellish copiously with mint.
Then comes the delicate and important operation of frosting. By proper manipulation of the spoon, the ingredients are circulated and blended until nature, wishing to take a further hand and add another of its beautiful phenomena, encrusts the whole in a glistening coat of white frost.
Thus harmoniously blended by the deft touches of a skilled hand, you have a beverage eminently appropriate for honorable men and beautiful women.
When all is ready, assemble your guests on the porch or in the garden where the aroma of the juleps will rise heavenward and make the birds sing. Propose a worthy toast, raise the goblets to your lips, bury your nose in the mint, inhale a deep breath of its fragrance and sip the nectar of the gods.
Being overcome with thirst, I can write no further.

Sincerely,
Lt. Gen. S.B. Buckner, Jr.
VMI Class of 1906

This Page last updated 10/01/02
 

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Enjoyable read. It reminded me of the Nashville Steeplechase held in the Spring. I haven't thought about the event in numerous years. Drinking, horses, and straw hats.
 

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Bodemeister has never ran on dirt. Has some nice speed figures, great trainer, and has done nothing wrong. He is a toss for me.
where you getting your facts? i was at the arkansas derby he won by 9.5 links and 3 seconds off world record 1 1/8 time against secret circle another baffert horse. looked like dirt to me? brown loose stuff that when added to water makes mud?

secret circle had already won rebel (g3) and southwest stakes (g2) at oaklwan. bode came in at 9/5 having raced 3 races as compared to secret circle who many thought would be the favorite but his odds went up to 5/2.

he has had 4 races 2 firsts 2 seconds all on dirt for 700,000 some odd dollars. didnt race as a 2 year old and would be first horse in awhile to win it without racing as 2 yo

http://www.horseracingnation.com/horse/Bodemeister

edit: on the link provided at the end of each horses info click on the movie reel to see his impressive performance he found another gear in the last .25 mile. all from outside post
 

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Thanks for the letter. A fun read!
 

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I'm going to watch a few days racing before I give my sure to go wrong advice. I will say this it is a much improved field over last yrs Derby and I think the winner will be a horse that lost their last start.
 

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I'm going to watch a few days racing before I give my sure to go wrong advice. I will say this it is a much improved field over last yrs Derby and I think the winner will be a horse that lost their last start.

like Tim , I like to dabble in race handicapping....gonna look at the post position draw today,will also make a phone call to my BIL on Sat morning in Ky. to get an accurate weather/track report...might even have to call Dr. Cahill and see if he is still hanging around the paddocks instead of training dogs:p

D.Wayne Lukas got a late entry yesterday when another horse dropped out and always believed in fate...
 

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like Tim , I like to dabble in race handicapping....gonna look at the post position draw today,will also make a phone call to my BIL on Sat morning in Ky. to get an accurate weather/track report...might even have to call Dr. Cahill and see if he is still hanging around the paddocks instead of training dogs:p

D.Wayne Lukas got a late entry yesterday when another horse dropped out and always believed in fate...
Not for you Bon but a trivia question who are the two top living KY Derbry trainers?
 

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I'm going to watch a few days racing before I give my sure to go wrong advice. I will say this it is a much improved field over last yrs Derby and I think the winner will be a horse that lost their last start.
THAT makes ME feel good;-)
 

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where you getting your facts? i was at the arkansas derby he won by 9.5 links and 3 seconds off world record 1 1/8 time against secret circle another baffert horse. looked like dirt to me? brown loose stuff that when added to water makes mud?

secret circle had already won rebel (g3) and southwest stakes (g2) at oaklwan. bode came in at 9/5 having raced 3 races as compared to secret circle who many thought would be the favorite but his odds went up to 5/2.

he has had 4 races 2 firsts 2 seconds all on dirt for 700,000 some odd dollars. didnt race as a 2 year old and would be first horse in awhile to win it without racing as 2 yo

http://www.horseracingnation.com/horse/Bodemeister

edit: on the link provided at the end of each horses info click on the movie reel to see his impressive performance he found another gear in the last .25 mile. all from outside post

You are exactly right Bodemeister is a nice horse with a big shot, will be the favorite, who ran lights out at Oaklawn. I was having a conversation with a friend about the other hot horse Went the Day Well, who has not proven himself on a dirt surface except with a maiden win at GP.
 

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Regarding mint juleps, after we moved to Kentucky in 1993, we went to a derby party where mint juleps were being served. My wife, after sampling one said "this is not a lady's drink". The host said after you have few you won't be a lady.
 

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Speed Speed Speed today. Still along way to Sat and might rain this pm and change everything.
 

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Dr Feelgood
am I still feelin good?
 

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Any comments on Take Charge Indy??? A son of AP Indy, won the Fla. Derby holding off a couple of serious challenges. Plus, I can't help but like the name;)
 

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Any comments on Take Charge Indy??? A son of AP Indy, won the Fla. Derby holding off a couple of serious challenges. Plus, I can't help but like the name;)
I will include him on the exotics because he is sired by AP Indy and I like the trainer in Byrne with Calvin Borel on board,he can get the distance
 
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