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Worst. Cocktails. Ever.

on 23/05/11 at 8:42 am


Mint Julep

PERHAPS SHE HAD already had two drinks. Perhaps it was only one. Whatever the case, the adage that drinking breaks down inhibitions about further drinking seemed particularly relevant.

She tilted her head in a manner suggesting the former.

“I’ll have a mint julep,” she cooed.

Her similarly tilted-headed friend giggled as she said, “Me, too.”

“Have you ladies ever had a mint julep?”

“Nooo …” they answered in unison.

“But it’s almost the Derby,” said the original tilter, “and I think we should.”

Unassailable logic for her perhaps, except that the Derby and even the Preakness had already passed.

I set to work muddling the mint, placing it in the bottom of two glasses. I added a splash of simple syrup and ice. Using my wooden muddler, I proceeded to grind the ice and mint in a quick up and down motion, then added some bourbon, shaking both juleps before pouring them into glasses and topping them with soda water.

The Tilting Twins tasted.

“Yuck,” they said in unison. “These are terrible.”

Yes, they are. In fact, mint julep is No. 1 in my top four all-time worst cocktails:

• The mint julep, despite its long and distinguished pedigree, is one of the worst-tasting cocktails I’ve ever had. In fact, perhaps because of that very pedigree, I consider it to be the worst cocktail of all time. Mint, sugar and bourbon no matter how you mix it, muddle it or blend it, is truly a terrible combination.

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