For 25 years, mint juleps made with Early Times have been the official drink of the Kentucky Derby, despite the fact that the popular whiskey isn't actually a real bourbon. Officially, bourbons need to be aged in new oak barrels, but Brown-Forman, the company that makes Early Times, uses old barrels to age the whiskey. For purists, though, the company recently started producing "Early Times 354," a classic bourbon. Regardless of which spirit you choose, though, Early Times mixes nicely with mint and simple syrup, and offers a Kentucky Derby authenticity that you won't get from any other bourbon!
Photo: Tamaki, Flickr.com