First, prepare the Mint Julep Punch recipe. Now raise your pinky and say, in your best Southern drawl, 'I do declare this to be an excellent punch recipe.' Very good. On second thought, try a Mint Julep first. If you like the drink you'll like the punch.
Mint Julep: Muddle several mint leaves and 2 teaspoons sugar in the bottom of a highball glass or mint julep cup, add 3 ounces Kentucky bourbon and fill with crushed ice.
Better yet, use mint simple syrup. Mint Julep Recipe #2: Bring 1 cup water and 1 cup sugar to boil. Add 1 bunch fresh mint, reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes. Cool and strain the mint. Pour 3 ounces Kentucky bourbon and 1 tablespoon mint simple syrup, or to taste, into the glass, fill with crushed ice and garnish with a mint sprig.
1 cup mint jelly
4 cups water
1 750-ml. (3 1/4 cups) bottle bourbon
6 cups pineapple juice
1/2 cup lime juice
7 cups lemon-lime soda
Chill all ingredients well before mixing.
Combine the mint jelly and 2 cups of water in a saucepan, stirring over low heat until the jelly melts. Cool and refrigerate until you're ready for it.
Add bourbon, pineapple juice, remaining water, and lime juice. Chill.
To serve, pour mint julep mixture over a small block of ice or ice mold in a punch bowl. Slowly pour in the soda, stirring gently. Garnish with lime slices and fresh mint leaves, if desired.
This recipe makes over 40 4-ounce servings, an average punch cup size.