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The story behind the Kentucky Derby's $2,000 cocktail

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It's Kentucky Derby weekend and that means breaking out the big hats, betting on the horses and ... paying up to $2,000 for a drink. Wait, what? 

Ah, yes. The infamous mint julep. Just one of these puppies might empty out your wallet, though there is the cheaper option: it's only $1,000. (Via Kentucky Derby

So what's the deal with the steep price? Well, for starters it's that cup. This year they feature a gold-plated medallion of a horse and a garland of roses. But like I said, that's just the beginning. (Via Twitter / Matthew Willinger

Of course you have the basics fresh mint, crushed ice, Early Times Kentucky Whisky and the sweetener ... (Via SB Nation

Master distiller Chris Morris says to get the sweet taste, "We have candied rose petals, actual rose petals that we’ve soaked in sugar water... It has the mint, but now it has the rose hint to it.” (Via USA Today

"And then a golden sipping straw. There it is, it's part of the package. 

That's an actual straw?

An actual gold sipping straw. There it is, with a gold dusted mint garnish."

Yes, a golden straw. So, do you think it's worth it? Well, apparently plenty of people do. 

Every year about 120,000 of the cocktails are sold at Churchill Downs Racetrack. We'll leave that math up to you.  (Via Kentucky Derby

Now, not every mint julep at the derby is served in a golden cup with candied rose petals — there are affordable ones, too. The drink has actually been a staple among derbygoers since the races started in 1875. But the drink is much older — dating back about 200 years. 

"Virginians started mixing the version drink around 1803 ... The concoction made its way to Kentucky, the home of bourbon, whiskey and Kentucky colonel mint." (Via Yahoo!

The perfect mixture and the drink's popularity grew wildly. As far as the more expensive version — much of money raised reportedly goes to charity for aging horses.

The 2013 Art of BBQ

Blue Ox Dining Group will partner with The Arts and Humanities Council to host a two day festival Oct. 11-12 in Downtown Tulsa.

The Bar-B-Q themed competition and showcase, now in its 16th year, is retooling to be more guest experience oriented and to highlight the visual, performance and culinary arts. 

The event will benefit The Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa.  

The Art of BBQ festival grounds will be located between 1st and 3rd St. on Elgin Avenue and on 2nd Street from Detroit to Greenwood in Downtown Tulsa’s Blue Dome District.  

The event will kick off at 6pm on Friday night at Legends Dance Hall and will feature a local restaurant and brewery showcase, an art auction, dance performances and live music from local musicians.

The VIP after party will be located at Back Alley Blues & BBQ, which will be converted to host live music and DJs until 2am.

The OU/Texas tail-gate, Bar-B-Q cook-off, art festivaland other street events will begin on Saturday morning and continuethrough the day.

The event will feature vendor booths, local Bar-B-Q food trucks, artist booths, and live music and dance to complement the reworked Bar-B-Q cook-off.

The categories for this year’s competition will be grilled items, smoked items, wings, sauce, ribs, sides and desserts.

Voting will be people’s choice in most categories with a few categories judged by local celebrities.

The event will also feature a tailgate cookout to coincide with the OU vs. Texas football game.

The 2013 Art of BBQ is an overhauled version of the annual event, now in its 16th year.

The new format is designed to be more appealing to casual event goers and is designed to optimize fund-raising opportunities for the Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa.

“We really wanted to take it up a notch this year and felt like by changing things around a bit, we could better showcase the arts and create a really fun two days for our guests.” said Blake Ewing, The Blue Ox Dining Group founder, and event organizer.

For more information, including the event schedule, or about participating in the event, either as a sponsor, artist, cook-off competitor, or to volunteer visit or

Proceeds from The Art of BBQ will benefit thousands of children in the greater Tulsa area through the arts and culture programs of Arts & Humanities Councilof Tulsa.  

Sponsors include the Blue Ox Dining Group, Fowler Toyota of Tulsa, BOK, NovSun, and Cox Media Group.

Scissortail Street Street Competition and BATTLE OF THE BANDS

Blue Ox Dining Group has partnered with Quickie-Mart skate shop and ROCK 103 to host a two day street competition, Oct. 11-12 in Downtown Tulsa. The inaugural competition, expected to be the only one of its kind in the area, will feature skate and fixed gear bike competitions and races, a street art competition, and a battle of the bands.



Spank 7pm

Benny's Little Weasel 8pm

Absence of Ink 9pm

Dead End Drive 10pm 

This event will benefit Rise & Shine, a local neighborhood improvement project.  The event, located between Frankfort and Greenwood on 3rd St. at the south east end of The Blue Dome District, will kick off at 6pm on Friday night and will feature a skate demonstration, free skate lessons, and a midnight ride. Area DJs will perform in the skate area throughout the evening.  The battle of the bands and street art events also begin on Friday night with round one of the ten-team contest and a live street art demonstration by Tulsa’s best artists.

The event will also feature vendor booths and local food trucks. The skate and street art competitions will begin at 10am on Saturday morning and will continue throughout the day. The Battle of the Bands Finals will be Saturday night on the ROCK 103 Stage and will be followed by a performance from the popular local band, SocietySociety.  

The event is the evolution of the former Joe Momma’s Back to School Battle of the Bands, an annual event hosted by Joe Momma’s, a local pizza establishment and first restaurant concept by Blake Ewing, founder of The Blue Ox Dining Group.  “We really wanted to take it up a notch this year and felt like street art, skating and fixed gear bike riding were all complimentary to our battle of the bands. We called the guys at Quickie Mart and they were enthusiastic about partnering. This will be a great event for a worthy cause.” said Ewing.  

Proceeds will help fund Blue Ox dining’s community building effort, Rise & Shine, which held its first neighborhood cleanup effort in The Pearl District in August.  For more information about the event schedule or about participating in the event, either as a sponsor, street artist, skateboarder or cyclist visit or Scissortail Street Competition on Facebook.  If you have questions, contact event coordinator, Megan Wilson at 918.949.3860.  Quickie Mart is a local skate shop located at 53rd and Peoria and the Blue OxDining Group is a Tulsa based restaurant and entertainment group, with several concepts located in the downtown area.

 The event will be located in front of and on the grounds of the former Midland Valley Train Depot at 520 E 3rd. Street.  Sponsors include Blue Ox Dining Group, Quickie Mart, ROCK 103.3, Joe Momma’s, Valcour Studio, The Hunt Club, Joe Momma's, BackAlley Blues and BBQ, Urban Tulsa, Okie ToneRecords, The Dog House, Vans Core Skate, DC, Globe, Volcom, Knowledge Skateboards, Endurance Skateboards, and Red Bull.

Cheers! States with the biggest beer drinkers

24 sensational sand sculptures

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