Before the Julep was a celebrated type of cocktail, it was medicine. And before it was automatically made with bourbon, it was typically made with brandy. The Prescription Julep reflects both aspects of the Julep’s history. Published in Harper’s Monthly in 1857, it was a tongue-in-cheek reference to the drink’s medicinal past and called for both Cognac and rye whiskey. The dual spirit base is a beautiful balance of spice and depth, which supports the extra kick of sugar from the simple syrup and gets a refreshing, aromatic blast from the mint. As cocktail historian David Wondrich writes in Imbibe!, this is the “tastiest Mint Julep recipe” he knows. We can’t help but agree.
A smash is a cocktail made with crushed or shaved ice, fruit, sweetener, a base spirit and some sort of herb. The Whiskey Smash is the brainchild of Jerry Thomas, the patron saint of modern bartending, who published the recipe in his first book back in 1887. James Beard award-winning barman Dale DeGroff tipped off modern tipplers to the joys of the...