Kentucky Derby Day Favorites, an Update, and a Quick Look at Our Culinary Tour to Jefferson’s Virginia
Greetings from the Bunkycooks. I apologize for the sporadic blog posts recently and hope to change that in the coming months. We have been traveling and then playing catch up when we finally do arrive home, so things are a bit out of sorts. The good news is that I have lots of great content from our travels and look forward to sharing it with you soon.
As you may know, we just returned from our trip to Jefferson’s Virginia. Our events in Richmond and Charlottesville were met with ideal temperatures and sunny days. The tour truly went beyond my expectations after several months of arduous planning and great anticipation.
The flowers and trees were in full bloom in Central Virginia and the grass at the farm and at Monticello a lush, verdant springtime green. I can’t begin to describe how beautiful our evening was at Manakintowne Specialty Growers with the sun setting over the farm or our lunch in the orchard at Monticello as the petals from the flowering cherry trees were blowing across the crystal clear, blue skies overlooking the hills of Virginia. Breathtaking, is all I can say.
Our fine dining experience at Lemaire with Executive Chef Walter Bundy delighted our guests with his exquisite tasting menu accompanied with wines selected by Wine Manager, Greg McGehee. Our final event at Olli Salumeria was fascinating as we toured the facility with cured meat artisan, Oliviero Colmignoli. Our guests were equally as inquisitive about the process of curing meats as they were to taste them.
Our chefs, farmers, winemakers, food artisans, and historians made this event a very special tour and I want to thank them for their time, talents, and beautiful food and wine. It was a memorable few days for our guests, for us, and for those who took part in hosting the event. We do hope to return to Virginia again in the future for another culinary adventure.
I will be posting a full recap of our tour in the future, but for now, there is a famous food and beverage focused event quickly approaching that you might need recipes for, The Kentucky Derby.
Derby Day Weekend is just around the corner (May 3-4, 2013) and most certainly involves a nip or two of bourbon along with some of Kentucky’s best loved recipes, a Mint Julep and a Kentucky Hot Brown. Of course, I just might have a few more suggestions for using some of that bourbon. 😉
No Derby Day party would be complete without a Mint Julep and this is the recipe from the beautiful and historic Brown Hotel in downtown Louisville, Kentucky. Their preferred whiskey is Woodford Reserve and as you will see in the video that was made in the Thoroughbred Lounge at the hotel, their version has a bit of a twist.
This Kentucky Hot Brown was made at home using the original recipe from the Brown Hotel. You can also see their version in the video that we made with Chef Laurent Géroli. I still think there’s a secret to their sauce and they ain’t tellin’. This might be a nice option for hungry Derby Day guests or the day after your Derby party. #hangoverfood
Bourbon Sweet Potato Biscuits made with Woodford Reserve, served with country ham and Farmstead cheddar cheese are excellent and a perfect pick-up food to serve during your Derby party.
How about another bourbon cocktail? When you have imbibed in enough Mint Juleps, this Bourbon Drop Cocktail has a nice and refreshing flavor with fresh lemon and mint. After all, one can never have too many bourbon cocktail recipes at their disposal.
And just in case you need a dessert for your Derby Day festivities (and you haven’t ordered your Derby Pie® from the folks at Kern’s Kitchen in Louisville), you might want to try this Brown Sugar-Bourbon Ice Cream. There’s nothing like combining a little dessert with a shot of bourbon.
I will post a recap of Cinco de Mayo dishes in the next few days. I also hope to announce a very special project I have been working on for some time. I may be enjoying one or two of these cocktails myself when I am able to share the news with all of you. 😉
Enjoy the rest of your Sunday and have a great week!