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I’ll have another, and yes, I’ll Have Another! We each had our own trifecta picks and then the three of us picked a family trifecta and we won! Sipping a blackberry mint julep in my pink derby hat I cheered on I’ll Have Another along with Bodemeister and Dullahan.

Two major cocktails collided today. My kitchen was quite confused: would it be Cinqo-de-Mayo flavored or Kentucky bred or both? I can’t pass up a good margarita or julep opportunity. The juleps were soooo good I might have to postpone the margaritas until Seis de Mayo.

Last night we started with the official Kentucky Oaks drink, the Oaks Lily in an official 2011 Kentucky Oaks glass.

Rather than the traditional The Early Times Mint Julep, I opted for Blackberry Mint Julep. I’m not a huge fan of bourbon and I thought the blackberries might help the sipping. Yes indeed. I’ll have another, and another please.

Chipotle Cheddar Bisque served in shooter glasses seemed like a great idea. It’s been rainy and chilly here for days. Of course, the sun came out and we didn’t need anything to warm our bones. Shooters were brilliant; while I served them warm – not hot – the chipotle peppers added a nice level of heat to the taste. The trifecta pepper garnish balanced the heat with cool crispness. I made some modifications to the recipe found here, but I’m enjoying my julep too much to bother typing it up for you.

Next up: my version of Mexican mollettes – toasted bread with bean paté. I used the chipotle EVOO from DEVO, one of my favorite non-local olive oil vendors. I didn’t plan out my menu until this morning; there was no time to cook dried beans. I substituted with canned. If you’re really short on time, you can use refried beans.

Back to Kentucky, but still on the open-faced sandwich kick, we gave Kentucky Hot Browns a shot. The recipe traditionally calls for roasted turkey. I used baked ham instead. This sandwich is layered with Mornay sauce, parmesan, ham, tomato and bacon. Did I mention Mornay sauce and bacon? This was not a long shot in terms of winning over guests. Like croquet monsieur, this sandwich is usually covered with Mornay sauce. Who wants to spill on their seersucker jacket? I spread the sauce on the bread and then again on the ham. Not too much, just enough.

Sweet win needs a sweet ending. Mint Julep Cupcakes and Frozen Mojito Individual Pies. A little bit horse country and a little bit south-of the border.

I really don’t think I can have another.

Instant replay:

blackberry mint julep  chipotle cheddar bisque  kentucky hot browns mexican mollettes  frozen mojito pie

Blackberry Mint Julep

Chipotle Cheddar Bisque

Kentucky Hot Browns

Mexican mollettes

Frozen Mojito Individual Pies

Mint Julep Cupcakes