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Moscow mule

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A Moscow Mule is a Buck or Mule made with vodka, ginger beer, and lime. The name refers to the popular perception of vodka as a Russian product and the intense flavor "kick" of ginger beer. Ironically, ginger beer is generally not available in Russia.

The Moscow Mule kicked off the vodka craze in the United States during the 1950s, when gin was the preferred "white" (clear) liquor. The cocktail was invented in 1941 by John G. Martin of G.F. Heublein Brothers, Inc., an East Coast spirits and food distributor, and John "Jack" Morgan, President of Cock 'n' Bull Products which produced ginger beer and proprietor of the Cock 'n' Bull Tavern, a bar on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles popular with celebrities.

Left: Vodka is the Moscow mule's main ingredient.

Legend has it that the Moscow Mule was served in a copper mug as part of its marketing. John G. Martin then launched a Moscow Mule marketing campaign targeting American bars, a strategy that played a major role in shifting the liquor market from gin to vodka.

Moscow Mule Cocktail Ingredients

  • One part vodka
  • One part lime juice
  • 3 parts ginger beer (the proportion of ginger beer varies from 2 parts to 4 parts)

Preparation and Serving


Mix ingredients together and serve in a copper cup on the rocks; poured over ice.



  • Angostura Bitters or Fee Brother's Whiskey Barrel-Aged Bitters is sometimes added.

  • Mule's Kick, served over crushed ice in a copper (or other metal) mug, with no fruit.

  • Three Legged Mule, with Jameson Irish Whiskey.

  • Manuka Mule, served with 42BELOW Manuka Honey vodka, adding a warm and spicy taste. Also known as Honey Bear in the UK.

  • George Special, served with slice of orange instead of lime.

  • Garden Mule, served with fresh melon & cucumber slices crushed into a shaker.

  • Vanilla Mule, served vanilla vodka, lime juice (and wedge), ginger beer, bruised mint leaves, over ice.


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