Kentucky vs. Morocco Cocktail


This true tin-cup mint julep, from Toronto gastropub The Black Hoof, has a serious spice-bazaar kick. Plan ahead: the fruit-infused bourbon requires at least one month of infusion time, and the spiced syrup calls for at least 24 hours of steeping. Once they're made, the bourbon will keep indefinitely and the syrup will keep for up to two weeks.


For the Fruit-infused Bourbon and Moroccan-spiced Simple Syrup

  • 26 oz. bourbon
  • 1 cup currants
  • 12 cup golden raisins
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 12 tsp. ground coriander
  • 12 tsp. ground ginger
  • 12 tsp. cinnamon
  • 12 tsp. whole black peppercorns
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper

For one Cocktail

  • 5 mint leaves, plus 1 sprig for garnish
  • 1 12 oz. fruit-infused bourbon
  • 1 oz. fresh lime juice
  • 12 oz. Moroccan-spiced simple syrup
  • Crushed ice


Step 1

Make the infused bourbon: Put all bourbon ingredients in a glass jar. Seal. Keep at room temperature, shake daily. Bourbon will be sufficiently infused after four weeks, but a longer infusion leads to deeper flavor. Bourbon will keep indefinitely.

Step 2

Make the Moroccan simple syrup: Combine sugar with 4 cups water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stir until sugar is fully dissolved. While simple syrup is still hot, add all spices. Cool to room temperature, transfer to an airtight container, and allow mixture to steep overnight. After 24 hours, strain out solids through cheesecloth or a coffee filter. Syrup will keep for up to 2 weeks, refrigerated.

Step 3

Make the cocktail: In a 12 oz. tin cup, muddle mint leaves. Add bourbon (straining out any fruit solids) and lightly muddle again. Add lime juice and syrup, and fill cup halfway with crushed ice, adding more syrup if desired. Top with more crushed ice, and garnish with a sprig of mint.

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