Wines With Charm Blog

Party Tips for the Perfect Kentucky Derby Party & Cocktail Recipes

The Kentucky Derby is a great American tradition that is celebrated nationwide the first weekend of May. People flaunt their beautiful dresses, hats, and suits, party decorations, cheer on the horses, throw down their bets and spend the day partying. They care about betting and dressing up, but they do care even more about Derby cocktails and food.

Here's are simple Kentucky Derby party tips for cocktail drinks and decorations.  


Kentucky Derby Cocktail Drinks


A good derby cocktail should be bright and refreshing that could hydrate people under the Louisville sun.


Mint Julep


Kentucky Derby and Mint Julep are inseparable. It's a signature drink and it never goes out of style.

Here's what you need:

2oz Woodford Reserve bourbon

2 teaspoons 2:1 Turbinado or Muscovado, syrup

Fresh spearmint or peppermint

Crushed ice

Here's how to mix it:

  1. Add fresh mint to the bottom of the glass.
  2. Add a spoon full of crushed ice and the syrup. Muddle firmly.
  3. Fill the glass with crushed ice.
  4. Add the bourbon.
  5. Add a splash of soda and stir.

Kentucky Gambler Punch


Here's what you need:

1 bottle of Woodford Reserve

2 liters of fresh brewed tea

15 lemons

1/2 cup sugar

15 sprigs of mint

1 large punch bowl


Here's how to prepare it:

  1. Peel the lemon.
  2. Add the sugar into the punch bowl.
  3. Place the peels into the punch bowl.
  4. Pick the leaves of 10 sprigs of mint and place into the punch bowl.
  5. Add the lemon juice into the punch bowl.
  6. Brew tea directly into punch bowl and mix well.
  7. Allow mixture to cool then add ice and bourbon.
  8. Serve garnished with mint.

Kentucky Derby Party Decorations


Rose and Boxwood Topiaries


Since the Kentucky Derby's nickname is “Run for the Roses”, why not decorate your food and drink table with the classic flowers, roses? Rose and boxwood topiaries are great centerpieces or tabletop decorations.


Roses and Wine Glass Charms


Roses are classic flowers used for Derby parties. It's easy to incorporate into any party decor especially to any spring party. If you have your own rose garden, you can use some as centerpieces for your food and drink tables. If you don't have any fresh roses, you can buy some artificial roses. You can also decorate your venue with roses. You can create a wreath and hung on your door, put some roses into vases or create garlands of roses and drape around the back of the chairs.

You can also use some floral themed plates, cups and napkins to give some color inspiration and match your decoration. Kentucky Derby Party Wine Charms are great party decorations for your wine glasses. These beautiful charms will impressively identify your guests' glassware on Derby Day!


One of the most exciting events in American history is Kentucky Derby, especially horse and racing lovers. If you want to host a Kentucky Derby party, prepare Derby decor, food and drinks and of course your derby outfit! Make sure to create a fashionable environment and party delights that will pull both derby big fans and not. Keeps your party rolling with these Kentucky Derby party ideas! Check out our previous blog for more Kentucky Derby party delights!
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Posted by Bonnie Palis on

Love my new charms and will be using them during the Derby. Thanks for the creativity.

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