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Mint Juleps for Kentucky Derby
Mint Juleps for Kentucky Derby
Tradville/Shutterstock.com

Kentucky Derby 2016: Where To Party in D.C.

The best in Derby-day activities

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Mint Juleps for Kentucky Derby
| Tradville/Shutterstock.com

On Saturday, May 7, Americans will embrace all things Bluegrass and celebrate one of the most fashionable, colorful and tasty sporting traditions — the 142nd Kentucky Derby. It's a glorious day filled with mint juleps, Kentucky hot browns, beer cheese, fried chicken, country ham biscuits, and hats as outrageous as the amount of food racegoers will consume.

Those who can't gallop off to Louisville for the weekend, however, shouldn't fret. As part of the American South, Washington is teeming with options that not only exemplify Kentucky cuisine on a regular basis, but are also great locations to celebrate the greatest two minutes in sports. D.C. diners can don their best hat, sip a julep and dig into Kentucky-themed menus that'll taste like a day in Derby City.

Run to one of these Washington eateries to celebrate the Run for the Roses. Those not betting on a pony can at least bet on a good time.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Acadiana

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901 New York Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 408-8848
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This Louisiana-themed eatery will tip its hat to Kentucky on Derby Day. Guests can order hot browns, burgoo stew and Derby pie at the bar or on the patio, all while sipping mint juleps made with Bulleit bourbon. Acadiana will also host designated “Master of Bourbon” Nick Crutchfield, who will pour samples of Kentucky bourbon for guests. No fee is charged for entry and the best-dressed guest will win a gift certificate.
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2. Barrel

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613 Pennsylvania Ave SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
(202) 543-3622
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Check out Capitol Hill for this bourbon bar’s annual Derby bash beginning at 3 p.m. Entry is free and eaters can enjoy six drink specials and five special food items, along with Barrel’s normal food fare. Drinks include the classic mint julep, barrel-aged mint julep, "Stone Street" peach julep and "Genuine Risk" frozen mint julep with milk-washed Bulleit bourbon and watermelon. Dishes include Kentucky ham and biscuits, buckets of fried chicken and wood fried oysters with smoked horseradish butter. [UPDATED]

3. Bourbon

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2321 18th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 332-0800
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Named for Kentucky’s top spirit, Bourbon will host a Derby brunch from 11 am to 4 pm and offer $10 juleps throughout the evening. Brunch will feature its normal menu, which already as Kentucky offerings such as hot browns, bourbon burgers and biscuits and sausage gravy. Attendees can participate in contests for best hat and best dressed while the Derby is shown live.

4. ChurchKey

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1337 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 567-2576
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This local favorite for beer will embrace the Bluegrass on May 7, hosting its first Derby Day Party from 3 to 7 p.m. For $65, guests can enjoy live bluegrass music, southern snacks, mint juleps and a craft beer list curated from Kentucky breweries (up to four drinks are covered with the purchase of a ticket). A limited number tickets will also be available at the door for $75.

5. Due South

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301 Water St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
(202) 479-4616
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Located in the heart of Yards Park, Due South is holding its first Derby Day party from 3 to 7 p.m. Entry is free and drink specials include traditional, sweet tea and frozen mint juleps, the third of which comes with a bottomless $40 option. The first fifty guests to order this special will receive an official 2016 Kentucky Derby julep glass, while all guests can enjoy beer cheese crostini and Chef Rusty’s Kentucky Fried Chicken.

6. Jack Rose Dining Saloon

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2007 18th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 588-7388
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Known for its wide bourbon selection, this Adams Morgan saloon will hold a celebration and race viewing on its rooftop terrace from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Entry is free and specials include $8 Derby Punch, $9 juleps and $10 bourbon cocktails, along with hot browns and cucumber sandwiches. Jack Rose has also partnered with Flying Dog Brewery to release its Flying Dog Mint Julep Ale.
Official

7. Little Miss Whiskey's Golden Dollar

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1104 H St NE
Washington, D.C. 20002
(202) 555-0666
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Head to H Street for Miss Whiskey’s Kentucky Derby pig roast from 3 p.m. until all food has been finished. For $48, attendees can enjoy all-they-can-eat dishes from Queen Vic Chef Ryan Gordon, including Bulleit bourbon and caramel dipped pork belly lollipops, pimento mac and cheese, and bourbon-injected whole roasted pig. Drinks provided by Anderson Valley Brewing are also unlimited and a live showing of the race will take place.

8. Logan Tavern

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1423 P St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 332-3710
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This Logan Circle eatery will offer a live showing of the Derby and Kentucky-themed eats, including fried green tomatoes and chocolate bourbon Derby pie. Drinks include classic mint juleps, peach juleps and blackberry juleps. Diners can stop by for free from 3 p.m. to close and all attendees with be entered into a “Win, Place, Show” gift card giveaway, with a prize also extended to best dressed.
Official

9. Red Derby

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3718 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20010
(202) 291-5000
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Head to this Columbia Heights favorite for its Big Hat Brunch from 11 to 3:30 pm, featuring signature menu items like the Derby Breakfast Bowl with potatoes, scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, tomatoes and onions. Around 5 p.m. is when the mint juleps will flow, with Kentucky Gentleman juleps priced at $5 and $7 Bulleit juleps. Entry is free, as Red Derby “does not believe in cover charges.”

10. Southern Efficiency

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1841 7th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20004
(202) 316-9396
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Boasting a menu authentic to Kentucky and its bourbon country, Southern Efficiency will hold its third Pre-Derby Party beginning at 2 p.m. Entrance is free and guests can enjoy discounted dishes like its signature Rolled Oyster Hot Brown, Louisville chips and Benedictine dip, buttermilk biscuits and Benton’s ham. Guests are encouraged to dress the part for the party, which also includes a live showing of the Derby and mint juleps on tap.

11. The Round Robin Bar

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1401 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20004
A Washington institution, the Willard’s Round Robin bar will again host its “Bonnets and Bow-Ties Kentucky Derby Party” from 4 to 7 p.m. A $99 ticket means a mint julep bar, a Southern buffet, jazz music, and much more. [UPDATED]
Official

1. Acadiana

901 New York Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Official
This Louisiana-themed eatery will tip its hat to Kentucky on Derby Day. Guests can order hot browns, burgoo stew and Derby pie at the bar or on the patio, all while sipping mint juleps made with Bulleit bourbon. Acadiana will also host designated “Master of Bourbon” Nick Crutchfield, who will pour samples of Kentucky bourbon for guests. No fee is charged for entry and the best-dressed guest will win a gift certificate.
901 New York Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

2. Barrel

613 Pennsylvania Ave SE, Washington, D.C. 20003
Check out Capitol Hill for this bourbon bar’s annual Derby bash beginning at 3 p.m. Entry is free and eaters can enjoy six drink specials and five special food items, along with Barrel’s normal food fare. Drinks include the classic mint julep, barrel-aged mint julep, "Stone Street" peach julep and "Genuine Risk" frozen mint julep with milk-washed Bulleit bourbon and watermelon. Dishes include Kentucky ham and biscuits, buckets of fried chicken and wood fried oysters with smoked horseradish butter. [UPDATED]
613 Pennsylvania Ave SE
Washington, D.C. 20003

3. Bourbon

2321 18th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
Named for Kentucky’s top spirit, Bourbon will host a Derby brunch from 11 am to 4 pm and offer $10 juleps throughout the evening. Brunch will feature its normal menu, which already as Kentucky offerings such as hot browns, bourbon burgers and biscuits and sausage gravy. Attendees can participate in contests for best hat and best dressed while the Derby is shown live.
2321 18th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

4. ChurchKey

1337 14th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20005
This local favorite for beer will embrace the Bluegrass on May 7, hosting its first Derby Day Party from 3 to 7 p.m. For $65, guests can enjoy live bluegrass music, southern snacks, mint juleps and a craft beer list curated from Kentucky breweries (up to four drinks are covered with the purchase of a ticket). A limited number tickets will also be available at the door for $75.
1337 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005

5. Due South

301 Water St SE, Washington, D.C. 20003
Located in the heart of Yards Park, Due South is holding its first Derby Day party from 3 to 7 p.m. Entry is free and drink specials include traditional, sweet tea and frozen mint juleps, the third of which comes with a bottomless $40 option. The first fifty guests to order this special will receive an official 2016 Kentucky Derby julep glass, while all guests can enjoy beer cheese crostini and Chef Rusty’s Kentucky Fried Chicken.
301 Water St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003

6. Jack Rose Dining Saloon

2007 18th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
Official
Known for its wide bourbon selection, this Adams Morgan saloon will hold a celebration and race viewing on its rooftop terrace from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Entry is free and specials include $8 Derby Punch, $9 juleps and $10 bourbon cocktails, along with hot browns and cucumber sandwiches. Jack Rose has also partnered with Flying Dog Brewery to release its Flying Dog Mint Julep Ale.
2007 18th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

7. Little Miss Whiskey's Golden Dollar

1104 H St NE, Washington, D.C. 20002
Head to H Street for Miss Whiskey’s Kentucky Derby pig roast from 3 p.m. until all food has been finished. For $48, attendees can enjoy all-they-can-eat dishes from Queen Vic Chef Ryan Gordon, including Bulleit bourbon and caramel dipped pork belly lollipops, pimento mac and cheese, and bourbon-injected whole roasted pig. Drinks provided by Anderson Valley Brewing are also unlimited and a live showing of the race will take place.
1104 H St NE
Washington, D.C. 20002

8. Logan Tavern

1423 P St NW, Washington, D.C. 20005
Official
This Logan Circle eatery will offer a live showing of the Derby and Kentucky-themed eats, including fried green tomatoes and chocolate bourbon Derby pie. Drinks include classic mint juleps, peach juleps and blackberry juleps. Diners can stop by for free from 3 p.m. to close and all attendees with be entered into a “Win, Place, Show” gift card giveaway, with a prize also extended to best dressed.
1423 P St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005

9. Red Derby

3718 14th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20010
Head to this Columbia Heights favorite for its Big Hat Brunch from 11 to 3:30 pm, featuring signature menu items like the Derby Breakfast Bowl with potatoes, scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, tomatoes and onions. Around 5 p.m. is when the mint juleps will flow, with Kentucky Gentleman juleps priced at $5 and $7 Bulleit juleps. Entry is free, as Red Derby “does not believe in cover charges.”
3718 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20010

10. Southern Efficiency

1841 7th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20004
Boasting a menu authentic to Kentucky and its bourbon country, Southern Efficiency will hold its third Pre-Derby Party beginning at 2 p.m. Entrance is free and guests can enjoy discounted dishes like its signature Rolled Oyster Hot Brown, Louisville chips and Benedictine dip, buttermilk biscuits and Benton’s ham. Guests are encouraged to dress the part for the party, which also includes a live showing of the Derby and mint juleps on tap.
1841 7th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20004

11. The Round Robin Bar

1401 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20004
Official
A Washington institution, the Willard’s Round Robin bar will again host its “Bonnets and Bow-Ties Kentucky Derby Party” from 4 to 7 p.m. A $99 ticket means a mint julep bar, a Southern buffet, jazz music, and much more. [UPDATED]
1401 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20004

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