Saturday marks the 138th renewal of the greatest two minutes in sports - The Kentucky Derby.
While mint juleps may reign supreme as the drink of choice to celebrate, we came across one article which proclaims wine is more appropriate than juleps this year:
This year, the official wine sponsor of the Taste of Derby food and beverage bash a couple of days before the Derby is a Washington State winery called 14 Hands.
Why 14 Hands? A horse's height is measured in hands just as a person's is in feet. In ancient times, traders measured a horse by stacking fists up to its withers, the area just behind its neck. A "hand" is about four inches.
As you'll see in the tasting notes below, horses and wine have a natural affinity. There are wines named for mustangs, wild horses, iron horses, even flying horses.
14 Hands Winery is inspired by that idea. It's named for the diminutive wild mustangs that roamed the area now called Horse Heaven Hills in southern Washington, grazing on its vast grasslands, galloping down to the mighty Columbia River to drink.
At 14 hands, they were only 4 feet 9 inches tall, but they were revered for their unbridled spirit.
Wild Horse Winery, near Paso Robles on California's Central Coast, is named for its own herds of wild mustangs that populated the grasslands nearby to the east.
Iron Horse Winery, in California's Sonoma, is named for the train that topped at the winery's future site in the early 1900s.
Clos Pegase, in California's Napa Valley, is named for Pegasus, the winged horse of Greek mythology, on which mortals hoped they could fly up to heaven. Winery owner Jan Shrem, who made a fortune in art publishing, has a painting of Pegasus by well-known artist Odilon Redon on the labels of his wines.
So as you cheer for your favorite on Derby Day, you can add a few snacks (maybe roast beef with horseradish sauce, if that's not pushing the idea too far) and turn the event into a wine tasting. Save the Iron Horse bubbly to toast the winner.
Read more, Kentucky.com