Place mint leaves in a glass or mint julep cup. Press on them lightly with the back of a spoon to release the essential oils. Remove from glass if desired.
Add simple syrup to the glass. Note: Check out the post for variations on Mint Juleps using flavored simple syrups!
Pour in bourbon. Tip: Woodford Reserve, Maker's Mark, Old Forester and Knob Creek are all decent options, but feel free to experiment with your favorite bourbons.
Pack cup tightly with crushed or shaved ice. Stir until outside of the cup is frosted. Add enough crushed or shaved ice to create a dome on top.
"Slap" a sprig of mint, or clap between your hands, and garnish glass. Serve with a straw.