If there’s one other drink that has experienced a recent resurgence aside from the Old Fashioned, it’s the Moscow Mule. Despite the name, the Moscow Mule is a citrusy American cocktail first crafted during the 1950s with Smirnoff (hence the name), ginger beer and lime juice. When mixing drinks that don’t have components with very strong flavors, I recommend using a top shelf vodka brand. (If you’re over age 22, you should put down the raspberry-flavored Burnetts and be using nice vodka for everything anyway).
In selecting a ginger beer, I use Reed’s Original Ginger Brew (easy to find in Philly) or Gosling’s Ginger Beer (a Bermudian staple of another favorite drink of mine, the Dark & Stormy). If you want something slightly lighter, Fever Tree also makes a really nice (and adorably-packaged) version.
The key to a good Moscow Mule is that it must be coldddddddd (we’re talking about a drink that people think is from Russia, after all). To get the desired level of iciness, I typically use crushed ice in lieu of my beloved, huge ice cubes.
~ Cocktail Recipe ~
Two parts vodka (I prefer Ketel One)*
One part lime juice
Three parts Ginger beer*
Pour vodka into glass with ice and top with ginger beer. Garnish with lime wedge.
*Editor’s note: sometimes I switch the measurements of the vodka and ginger beer because I like a good time
Moscow Mules are usually served in copper Moscow Mule cups (naturally). I picked up a few of this inexpensive stainless steel version to add to my collection of very specific drinking apparatuses (Case in point: I spent the equivalent of a small country’s GDP on sterling silver mint julep cups last summer after convincing myself I was going to drink mint juleps every afternoon and basically turn my apartment into Churchill Downs). You could just as easily use highball glasses and you’d totally be in fashion. This can be confirmed by the April issue of Bon Appetit, which features an entire article on highball cocktails so the glasses may be an investment actually worth making, as opposed to, say, my mint julep cups which have never been used and are currently acting as flower vases.