On The Town

Preakness Parties and Drinks to Celebrate the Big Race

From frozen drinks to bus parties, here are the best ways to toast the middle jewel.

By Jess Mayhugh | May 9, 2019, 5:40 pm

The Black-Eyed Rye cocktail. -Mt. Washington Tavern
On The Town

Preakness Parties and Drinks to Celebrate the Big Race

From frozen drinks to bus parties, here are the best ways to toast the middle jewel.

By Jess Mayhugh | May 9, 2019, 5:40 pm

The Black-Eyed Rye cocktail. -Mt. Washington Tavern

Though its future location hangs in the balance, we can definitively say that, for now, the Preakness Stakes are a Baltimore tradition. And local bars, restaurants, and party professionals are celebrating the Charm City spectacle in characteristic style.

From cocktail specials to bus parties and everything in between, here are the best ways to celebrate the middle jewel of the Triple Crown.

Support thoroughbred care at Mt. Washington Tavern.
For the sixth year in a row, America’s Best Racing will hold a pre-Preakness party at Mt. Washington Tavern. On Wednesday, May 15, guests can enjoy Triple Crown-themed cocktails, a buffet of bar snacks, and a silent auction all to benefit the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, which awards grants to aftercare organizations around the country.

Sip on a slushie at Wet City.
Our favorite personified frozen drink machine is getting in the Preakness spirit this year at Wet City in Mt. Vernon. Decked out in an eyepatch, Blinky will be churning out frozen Black-Eyed Susan cocktails with rum, vodka, pineapple juice, orange juice, and coconut. The safest bet of the day? You’ll be wearing the eyepatch after a few of these.

Go downtown for al fresco happy hours.
All week long, Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts will be hosting events to celebrate the lead up to Preakness. There are events for kids, lunchtime markets, and even a fireworks show, but we’re mostly excited for their Monday-Thursday happy hours featuring vendors like Clavel, Charm City Pops, and Connie’s Chicken and Waffles.

Start the pregame party bright and early.
Get into the true infield spirit with tailgate pros Bmore Around Town, which will be hosting pregame parties at Mother’s and Southern Provisions starting at 8 a.m. on Preakness day. Tickets get you an unlimited brunch menu, bus transportation to Pimlico, a commemorative beer mug, and a general admission ticket to the infield. Just remember: pace yourself.

Imbibe a beautiful cocktail at The Elephant.
Now that The Elephant is officially staying open on North Charles Street, celebrate by trying their elegant cocktail Grandma Suzie. This horse-race-inspired drink is made with Hendrick’s gin, Grand Marnier, herbal liqueur, tonic, seasonal fruit, and edible flowers. With its elaborate garnish, it’s kind of like the Preakness hat of cocktails.

Go traditional with a Black-Eyed Susan.
As much as we love creative twists on classics, sometimes you really just want the original. Stop into the Grille at Harryman House for a no-fuss, Black-Eyed Susan made with Bare Knuckle bourbon, vodka, peach schnapps, orange juice, and sour mix served over crushed ice. It’s the official drink of Preakness for a reason.

Meet The Author

Jess Mayhugh is the digital editor for Baltimore, where she covers nightlife, sports, food, and events.

You May Also Like

Food & Drink

Local Flavor Live Podcast: Dining Adventures in France

Plus, James Beard Award news, an inside look at the annual Best Restaurants issue, and best bites of the week.

Food & Drink

In The Kitchen With Father Leo Patalinghug

Fr. Leo is all about connecting food, faith, and family.

In Good Taste

Open & Shut: Heroes and Helpers in the Food Scene

Spotlighting those working to improve food access and strengthen the service industry.

Food & Drink

All Greek to Us

Without caving to time or trends, Baltimore’s Greektown lives on.

Food & Drink

Culture Club

Baltimore businesses get in on the fermentation fad.

Food & Drink

A Fresh Start

Greg Nalley founded his fast-casual restaurant chain after a scary bout with cancer.

Connect With Us

Most Read

How to Support Small Businesses Amid Pandemic Panic: As foot traffic slows due to coronavirus, owners worry about lasting impacts.

Goucher College Unveils Roadside Marker Honoring Suffragette History: Descendants of women’s rights advocates recognized at special ceremony.

Local Boutiques Offer Deals and Online Shopping Amid Coronavirus Outbreak: Opening and closing updates from the retail scene.

Maryland Hoops, and Everyone Else, Stomachs A Sudden End to Their Seasons: Plus, an update on Trey Mancini’s health and Joe Flacco shows for Marshal Yanda’s retirement party

Baltimore Restaurants Cope With Indefinite Closures: Chefs introduce curbside takeout and delivery while weighing options for staff.