Where will you be during the two most exciting minutes in sports Saturday? If you won't be at Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby, make sure you've got a clear view of the starting gate on television, and a mint julep in your hand. Wearing the most outrageous hat you own will also help set the mood.
Here are some restaurants and bars in the L.A. area making mint juleps for the big day.
Baltaire will have a viewing party with the Baltaire Julep, the restaurant's take on the classic mint julep, customized based on a guest's desired spirit. Chef Travis Strickland will also be serving a Hot Brown sandwich with house-smoked turkey breast, roasted Campari tomatoes, roasted garlic cream sauce, Hooks white cheddar and braised pork belly on a toasted brioche ($18). Guests are encouraged to wear big hats, summer dresses, suits and bow ties. 11647 San Vicente Blvd., Los Angeles, (424) 273-1660, www.baltaire.com.
Bludso's Bar & Que on La Brea Avenue will have the race on, along with $5 mint juleps. 609 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 931-2583, www.barandque.com.
Chandelier Room at Santa Anita Park is continuing its guest chef series Saturday with Steve Samson of Sotto, Mike Khakina of Barrel and Ashes and Josh Drew of Picca and Electric City Butcher. The party starts at noon and includes a daily racing program, wagering tip sheet, the race, a glass of Champagne and food by Samson, Khakina and Drew. There will also be cocktails by Julian Cox. Tickets are $85 and can be purchased online. 285 W. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, (626) 574-7223, www.santaanita.com.
The Detour Bistro Bar is celebrating the derby with a viewing of the race, mint juleps and happy hour food specials. The festivities start at noon, and guests are encouraged to dress up in their finest derby attire. 12473 W. Washington Blvd., Culver City, (424) 289-8191, www.thedetourbistrobar.com.
Fig & Olive is making a Fig & Walnut julep with bourbon, St. Germain, port, muddled black mission figs and citrus. The drink is garnished with mint and shaved walnuts, and will be available for $14 Saturday. 8490 Melrose Place, West Hollywood, (310) 360-9100, www.figandolive.com.
Preux & Proper is making a mint julep daiquiri with JP Weiser rye whiskey and mint syrup. The slushy cocktail will be available all Saturday afternoon. 840 S. Spring St., Los Angeles, (213) 896-0090, www.preuxandproper.com.
Sometimes a lush but always classy about it. Follow me on Twitter @Jenn_Harris_