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Refreshing Sips for the Kentucky Derby

Photo via elixirsf.com

The Kentucky Derby is today and, whether you’re a fan of the races or not, we all love a good excuse to drink in the afternoon. Put on your Derby hats, seersucker suits, and floral dresses and head out for a day of Mint Juleps and Moscow Mules. 

1.  Elixir: 3200 16th St. 

This unassuming Mission saloon is a far cry from many of the dive bars in the neighborhood. They serve up unique cocktails made with fresh fruit and herbs. For the weekend, Elixir has created a special Mint Julep Cocktail Menu to celebrate a day at the races! From 12 to 6 pm drink various specialty cocktails made just for the Derby. Hats encouraged.

2.  Farmerbrown: 25 Mason St.

Farmerbrown makes soulful Southern food that’s perfectly suited for the Kentucky Derby. Fill yourself with a brunch of gumbo, jambalaya, fried chicken, and grits, while you enjoy the races. Try their vanilla mint julep with Buffalo Trace, housemade vanilla syrup, fresh mint, and soda.

3.  Marengo on Union: 1980 Union St. 

Enjoy the derby in this unseasonably warm sunshine underneath Marengo’s retractable roof. Crowds gather to this Marina spot in full attire to watch the races on one of their several TVs and sip from an array of festive drinks. Try the classic Mint Julep, the Peach Julep, or a Moscow or Kentucky mule (made with Jim Beam Rye).

4. The Starlight Room: 450 Powell St. 

The Starlight Room is hosting their annual Kentucky Derby Brunch. For a flat rate, you get to enjoy a classic Derby-style brunch buffet, bottomless Mint Juleps or Mimosas (sounds dangerous!), and a live bluegrass band. Prizes are awarded for the best-dressed couple and most creative hat. 

5.  The Burritt Room: 417 Stockton St. 

The speakeasy-like bar located downtown in the Mystic Hotel has two specialty cocktails to get you into the Derby spirit. The Burritt Alley Julep, made with Buffalo Trace bourbon and Fernet Branca takes a San Francisco approach to the Julep. Or, for a fruitier sip, try the Peachy Keen Cobbler, featuring sherry, peach liqueur, and muddled peaches.