The Original Moscow Mule Recipe
Let’s go back to the root (ginger, specifically). The beauty of this recipe is its simplicity.
Variations abound in the recipe-land of Mules. From tequila-infused (Mexican Mule) to melodramatic (Dark and Stormy Mule), the dynamism of the ginger beer and lime combo lends itself to high levels of adaptability.
However, a refreshing return to the basics may be just what you need to quench your culinary and, perhaps, literal thirst.
Where did the Moscow Mule come from?
Nope. The most popular legends of the Moscow Mule’s origin name Hollywood as its birthplace. The parents? Three individuals (don’t overthink it) who were having a tough time selling their unique products–vodka, copper mugs, and ginger beer–in the 40’s.
The three were able to do what no one person could do on their own. By combining their resources they created a timeless sensation and were able to profit from their genius.
Who are the real winners here? Us! The Moscow Mule is in a select league of cocktails found anywhere drinks are served. The Mule stands out, though, in its glistening copper mug.
Why a copper mug?
If you’ve already tried one, it’s unlikely you’d ask this question. Or you value the search for truth, and we applaud you. There are many myths surrounding this metal, but here are some truths:
When it comes to cocktails (or any beverage, if you’re picky enough), the container is just as important as the ingredients. The copper mug accomplishes an elevation of the Moscow Mule’s flavors without overpowering or competing with them during the experience. There are even different kinds of copper mugs, which you can find here.
Temperature is especially important for a Mule. Copper works as an insulator between what’s inside and outside the mug. Consistent temperature helps your drink stay cold and keeps the ice from diluting your cocktail as quickly. You want to taste each ingredient throughout your sipping session; a warm or diluted drink will ruin that for you.
When alcohol interacts with copper it oxidizes. Oxidation is a chemistry term which, for our purposes, means that the carbonation of your drink gets a boost. No one likes a flat drink, and the bubbliness means you experience more of the aroma pre-sip. For some, that bubbliness is essential for balancing the kick of a spicy ginger beer.
The original recipe: what’s in it?
Vodka, lime, and ginger beer are the building blocks of a Moscow Mule. Three ingredients which, when paired with a chilled copper mug, create the legendary drink sipped year-round.
As you’d imagine, the best kind of vodka and ginger beer for a Mule is hotly contested. Tito’s vodka is widely used, and Smirnoff claims to have been used in the first Moscow Mule. Ultimately, it’s up to you. If you’re looking for something different to try, check out Tahoe Blue, it has a delicious 3-vodka blend that finishes as smooth and clean as Lake Tahoe itself.
For ginger beer, we like Reed’s Craft Ginger Beer. For a Mule with more kick, try Bundaberg, and look for Fever-Tree for a lighter brew.
Moscow Mule Recipe
- Copper Mug
- Mixing Spoon
- 1.5 oz vodka
- 0.5 cup ginger beer
- 0.5 oz fresh lime
- 1 cup ice cubes
- 1. Chill your copper mug. Simply set it in the refrigerator for 15 minutes prior to five o’clock – whatever ‘five o’clock’ means to you.
- 2. Mise en place (/mizɑ̃ˈplas/) – an excuse to speak French, literally meaning “set in place”. After all, a good bartender is always organized. Set out each of your ingredients and tools.
- 3. Once your mug is chilled, fill it with ice. Then, add the vodka and lime juice to taste. Finally, fill the remainder of the mug with your ginger beer of choice and give it a quick swirl with your mixing spoon or straw.
- 4. Say “Voilà” in your best French accent (/vwa.la/)
- 5. Chef’s kiss. (Pinch the fingers of one hand together, and quickly kiss the tips of your fingers.)
- 6. Cheers. Whether you’re in the company of others, or in solitude, a ‘clink’ makes it official.
Add a Twist
If your cravings have you burnt out on the traditional Mule, add a twist of herbs or citrus to keep things interesting.Some of our favorite alternatives include:
What if I don’t like vodka?
First answer: Have you had really, really, good vodka? No? That may be the problem. Case closed.
Still, it’s fun to socialize the ginger beer and lime combo, letting them mingle with gin, whiskey, bourbon, or something else. It’ll be okay, vodka isn’t going anywhere.
Just like vodka and dad jokes, we’re sticking around too. While you can get the other ingredients at any grocery or liquor store, there’s only one place you can get handcrafted, 100% pure copper mugs that are food-safe and delivered to you with top-notch customer service (hint: it’s us! Shop around!). Also, we do free engraving, so you can put your mark on this classic cocktail.