Got $1,000 or $2,500 for a mint julep cup? | Courtesy of Woodford Reserve

This year, Woodford Reserve’s Kentucky Derby $1,000 Mint Julep Cups give back to the very organization that inspired their creation. The nonprofit Kentucky Derby Museum, located inside Churchill Downs and aimed at preserving Derby’s history, has been chosen as the charitable organization that’ll revive the proceeds from the benefit.

There are 90 $1,000 Noble Cups (18 karat yellow gold on sterling silver) and 15 Royal Cups (gold-plated sterling silver) available online beginning today through May 5.

“Woodford Reserve is honored to bring together two of Kentucky’s greatest traditions once again through our $1,000 Mint Julep Cup program,” said Mark Bacon, Woodford Reserve global brand director, in a press release. “We’re proud to honor the rich history of the Kentucky Derby with a premium celebration through our $1,000 Mint Julep Cup experience.”

There are 90 of these gems available. | Courtesy of Woodford Reserve

The fancy cups are handcrafted locally by From the Vault, and each will be sold in a silk bag inspired by the “purse” of winnings given at horse races. This year’s theme pays tribute to the British roots of the Kentucky Derby, complete with Earl Grey bitters as an ingredient.

Check out the recipe:

Woodford Reserve 2017 Kentucky Derby Mint Julep

1.5 oz Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon
1/4 oz Pimm’s Liqueur
1/2 oz Elderflower Cordial
1/4 oz Woodford Reserve Mint Julep Simple Syrup
1 dash Earl Grey bitters
Handful of mint

The drink is garnished with a bundle of baby’s breath and mint, and a sprinkle of dehydrated edible blue cornflowers.

“The Kentucky Derby Museum is honored by the support from Woodford Reserve and the $1,000 Mint Julep Cup program,” said Patrick Armstrong, Derby Museum president and CEO, in the release. “At the heart of our mission, we are dedicated to celebrating the long-standing history and tradition of the Kentucky Derby, just as this year’s special cup design exemplifies.”

The cups are available to purchase online through May 5 and may be picked up at Churchill Downs on Derby Day, May 6.

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Sara Havens
Sara Havens is the Culture Editor at Insider Louisville, known around town as the Bar Belle ( She's a former editor of LEO Weekly and has written for Playboy and The Alcohol Professor. Havens is the author of two books: "The Bar Belle" and "The Bar Belle Vol. 2."