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Black-eyed Susan crafted by @artistwithacocktail

Black-eyed Susan crafted by @artistwithacocktail

As the horses gear up for the Preakness, so does the time-honored tradition of sipping on the race's signature cocktail: the Black-eyed Susan. This cocktail, named after Maryland's state flower, has undergone many iterations, balancing bourbon's boldness with the tropical notes of pineapple and orange juice. It's a drink that's seen as many twists and turns as the race itself!

Recipe for the Black-eyed Susan


  • 1 ounce vodka for a clear, smooth base
  • 1 ounce bourbon to add a touch of Southern charm
  • ½ ounce orange liqueur for a hint of citrus complexity
  • ¾ parts orange juice, freshly squeezed for the best flavor
  • ¼ parts pineapple juice for a sweet, tropical zing
  • 3/4 ounce sour mix to bring it all together with a tangy note

Mixing Instructions

  1. Consider the “parts” as a call to your own taste; the original recipe went with 2 ounces of orange to ½ ounce of pineapple juice.
  2. Shake the vodka, bourbon, orange liqueur, orange juice, pineapple juice, and sour mix gently with ice to avoid over-dilution.
  3. Strain the mixture over crushed ice into a tall Collins glass for a full-bodied look.
  4. Garnish with a classic combination of an orange slice and a cherry for a pop of color and sweetness.

Personal Twist: After giving the original mix a try, a squeeze of lime and a dash of simple syrup might be added to balance the flavors, especially on a scorching 96-degree day when refreshment is as needed as the race excitement itself.

Black-eyed Susan crafted by @artistwithacocktail

Whether the Black-eyed Susan cocktail becomes a new personal favorite or not, it's all about the experience and tradition it brings to the Preakness Stakes. As the race heats up and the day gets hotter, let this be the drink in hand to toast to the swift hooves running the tracks. It may not be the Mint Julep of the Kentucky Derby, but it carries its own charm and heritage, promising a refreshing respite from the sweltering heat.

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