Fanfare around the mint julep, a bourbon based cocktail, has strong ties to the Kentucky Derby. In addition to the Churchill Downs, parties hosted on race day at bars and homes will most likely be serving up this signature drink. But is bourbon really the alcohol that resonates with Derby viewers of drinking age year round or is this liquor just a one trick pony to keep spirits high during what is considered the fastest two minutes in sports?
Nielsen Scarborough data shows that Kentucky Derby viewers are 21% more likely to have drank bourbon in the past month. However, when looking at overall type of alcohol that Derby viewers drink, it is wine that comes in first at 59%. Although not far behind, there is no photo finish needed as beer places second with 49% and liquor shows in third at 43%.
While Derby viewers may partake in a Mint Julep on race day as a way to connect to a time honored tradition, if it comes time to toast for a chance at the Triple Crown don’t look for them to be trading in their rose’ for roses anytime soon.
Source: Nielsen Scarborough USA+ Release 2 2015
Base: Adults 21+