Every time spring rolls around it brings with it so many things to get excited about. Warmer weather, longer days, blooming trees, and (🥁)…The Kentucky Derby.
If there’s one thing I miss since moving away from Kentucky, it’s the traditions around horse racing. I’ll never forget the first time in college when my friends took me to experience the racetrack for the first time. There’s nothing quite like the southern charm surrounding race day. Getting all dressed up – hat to toe – to mingle with fellow race fans while placing bets on beautiful horses and sipping bourbon cocktails in the sun. Some of my best and most vivid college memories were created in that atmosphere.
Although we won’t be making it to Churchill Downs May 1st, we’ll be celebrating the Run for the Roses from afar. I’m sharing a few tips for how to throw a party like a true Kentuckian with the help of Woodford Reserve and its signature Derby cocktail, the Woodford Spire.
As the official sponsor of the Kentucky Derby, every Derby party should include a bourbon cocktail. You can bring the taste of Kentucky to your guests with this easy recipe. Plus, you can order a bottle of Woodford Reserve using Drizly and save $10 on your Derby delivery with code DERBY10 (CA, CO, FL, DC, and IL) or take $5 off your first purchase wherever Drizly is available using code WRDERBY. Order Here.
The Woodford Spire
● 1.5 parts of Woodford Reserve
● 2 parts Lemonade
● 1 part Cranberry Juice
Add ingredients to mixing glass and stir
Pour over crushed ice
Garnish with a Lemon Twist and enjoy
For the decor, there’s no more appropriate way to add a festive touch to your decor than with a few bunches of red roses 🌹 I found these at the grocery store and couldn’t believe how beautiful they were! The perfect touch to celebrate the 147th Run for the Roses. Also, elevated barware is a must. Little details like a sophisticated mixing glass and mint julep cups add to the theme of the party. Linking the barware I used below for some inspiration:
In addition to a Woodford Spire in your hand, your next best accessory is your hat. I personally prefer a beautiful fascinator (here’s the link to the one I’m wearing above!). You can usually find them for a very affordable price at local discount stores and there are so many great Louisville boutiques that custom make them! Finding a dress is always my favorite part. Derby dressing is fun because it’s a chance to go all out and show your unique style mixed with a southern flair. Some of my favorite places to shop for Derby dresses are:
Now you’re ready to host with the perfect Derby look, taste and feel! Woodford Reserve Bourbon’s goal is always to enrich life with substance and style, and there’s no sporting event with more substance and style than the Kentucky Derby. Dating back to 1875, it’s the longest running sporting event in the US and true icon of Americana. Don’t forget to tune in and watch the most exciting two minutes in sports May 1st. Cheers y’all! 🥃