Moscow Mule

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Cocktail History

The Moscow Mule is a classic cocktail that was created by John Martin and Jack Morgan in the 1940s at Cock ‘n’ Bull in Los Angeles, California.

According to cocktail historians, Martin purchased the company Smirnoff Vodka with the idea that he could make the brand as popular in the United States as it was in Russia at the time, but he quickly found that no one wanted to buy it. Dismayed, he ended up at the bar where bartender Jack Morgan worked and learned that Morgan was having a similar problem with his own beverage—ginger beer. Since they were both at risk of losing all of their money on their investments, they decided to mix the two ingredients and started marketing it as a cocktail served in a snazzy copper mug, which soon took off and became one of the most popular drinks in America.

Although it’s unknown exactly how it originated, the name “Moscow Mule” is believed to have been randomly selected. At the time, Americans associated vodka with Russia, hence the word “Moscow.” And then “Mule” was added to the name because the ginger beer gives the drink a “kick” of flavor.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Vodka: This is a spirit made with grains, vegetables or fruits, and alcohol. We used Smirnoff Vodka because it’s high quality and affordable. For a mocktail version of this drink, try STRYKK Not V*dka in place of the vodka.

Lime Juice: This is the liquid juice of a lime. We used freshly squeezed lime juice.

Ginger Beer: This is a carbonated beverage made with ginger root, pineapple juice, citrus juice, honey, spices, cane sugar, and sparkling water. We used Reed’s Extra Ginger Beer because it has a classic spicy ginger flavor and is made with all-natural ingredients.

Lime Wheel: This is a lime slice that has been cut into a circular shape.

Mint Sprig: This is an herb. We used fresh Mojito mint.

Bartending Tools

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following bar tools:

Jigger: This is used to measure and pour ingredients. We used the Japanese jigger from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Bar Spoon: This is used to stir ingredients. We used the Barfly Stainless Steel Teardrop Bar Spoon.

Paring Knife: This is used to cut ingredients. We used the OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Paring Knife.

Juicer: This is used to juice citrus. We used the ALEEHAI Manual Fruit Juicer.

Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from The Art of Vintage Cocktails by Stephanie Rosenbaum.

The Art of Vintage Cocktails
The Art of Vintage Cocktails
Hardcover Book; Rosenbaum, Stephanie (Author); English (Publication Language); 108 Pages – 01/07/2014 (Publication Date) – Egg & Dart (Publisher)
$21.56

AuthorThe Art of Vintage Cocktails

Yields1 ServingPrep Time5 mins

Ingredients
 2 oz Vodka
 ½ oz Lime Juice
 4 oz Ginger Beer
 1 Lime Wheel
 1 Mint Sprig

Method
1

Add vodka and lime juice to a Moscow Mule mug.

2

Stir for 10-15 seconds.

3

Fill mug with cracked ice.

4

Top with ginger beer.

5

Garnish with lime wheel and mint sprig.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Vodka
 ½ oz Lime Juice
 4 oz Ginger Beer
 1 Lime Wheel
 1 Mint Sprig

Directions

Method
1

Add vodka and lime juice to a Moscow Mule mug.

2

Stir for 10-15 seconds.

3

Fill mug with cracked ice.

4

Top with ginger beer.

5

Garnish with lime wheel and mint sprig.

Moscow Mule

Make It a Mocktail: Use STRYKK Not V*dka in place of the vodka to try a booze-free version of this drink.

Shop Glassware & Tools

Find collections of cocktail glassware and bartending tools we recommend for your home bar in our Amazon shop.

PG Copper/Rose Gold Plated Stainless Steel Moscow Mule Mug - Bar Gift Set 4 - Factory Direct (19.5 oz) - Authentic Modern Design - Dimple Finish Hollow Handle!
PG Copper/Rose Gold Plated Stainless Steel Moscow Mule Mug – Bar Gift Set 4 – Factory Direct (19.5 oz) – Authentic Modern Design – Dimple Finish Hollow Handle!
STUNNING, SHATTERPROOF and DURABLE. GREAT for indoor, outdoor and everyday use!; To protect the delicate copper surface, please hand-wash only ! No abrasive detergents!
$24.99 Amazon Prime
OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Pairing Knife,Black/Silver,3-1/2-Inch
OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Pairing Knife,Black/Silver,3-1/2-Inch
Sturdy, stainless steel blade; Soft, comfortable, non-slip handle ensures a safe grip; Hand wash with warm, soapy water and promptly dry
$9.95 Amazon Prime

More Vodka Cocktails

If you like this vodka-based cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Lemon Drop Cocktail Recipe

Lemon Drop: A vodka cocktail made with triple sec, lemon juice, simple syrup, and a lemon twist

Mountaintop Meadow Cocktail Recipe

Mountaintop Meadow: A vodka cocktail made with elderflower liqueur, simple syrup, lavender bitters, dry sparkling wine, a pineapple wedge, and mint

Paradise Lost Cocktail Recipe

Paradise Lost: A vodka and sherry cocktail made with coconut water, lime juice, orgeat syrup, Angostura aromatic bitters, and mint

Vesper Martini Cocktail Recipe

Vesper Martini: A gin and vodka cocktail made with Lillet Blanc and a lemon twist

This post contains affiliate links, meaning we make a small commission each time you purchase a product using our links. Product images sourced from Amazon Product Advertising API. Amazon affiliate links last updated on 2024-03-04.

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