In bars across the states, people are gathering at their local watering holes to order the drink in the chic copper mug. The origins of the Moscow Mule have never been confirmed, but it is thought to have originated in the Los Angeles pub Cock-n-Bull in 1941. This year, the traditionally vodka-based cocktail is celebrating its 75th anniversary and we’re going to celebrate!
I spoke to Dennis O’Connor, Food and Beverage Director of South Florida’s Starr Restaurant Organization to get the scoop on this popular drink.
In the last couple of years, the popularity of the Moscow Mule has exploded. What’s behind this trend?
It’s relatively easy to make, refreshing and pairs well with food. Spice, Citrus, Vodka… what’s not to love!?
Everyone is obsessed with the copper mugs the Moscow Mule are served in. Why is this drink tied to this specific mug?
The copper mugs were actually part of the Moscow Mule’s marketing campaign. It was an Instagram flash mob of epic proportions. Legend has it the team at Cock-n-bull in Los Angeles decided on the mugs because they had a surplus of them and wanted to serve the cocktail in something that would make it stand-out.
They even went around the country photographing patrons with copper mugs to further popularize the drink. Some say that it helps to keep the drink icy but it’s really not necessary. Our variation at The Continental, the Dragonfruit Mule, is served in a tall rocks glass so that the fuchsia color is the visual.
Do you have any tips for anyone wanting to create the drink at home?
Use high-quality ingredients (for example, we use Fever Tree ginger beer), and don’t mess too much with the original. Ginger Beer, Vodka and citrus are key components — crushed ice is pretty key too. After that it’s fun to play with different fruits, herbs or spices for minor variations.
Do you have a preference when selecting vodka?
We choose Reyka Vodka because of the purity of the ingredient. Hand-made and naturally filtered water, combined with the pollution free air, creates some of the world’s best water, a key ingredient to the vodka.
If serving with food, what does the Moscow Mule pair well with?
The palate-cleansing quality of the ginger beer is great for the various flavors and influences of the global menu at The Continental. At the same time the light, refreshing drink doesn’t compete with dishes. It’s particularly nice with the Tacos al Carbon on a hot day.
If you’re visiting the South Florida area, you can find a variety of Moscow Mules at some of the hottest locations.
The hipster version of the Moscow Mule – named after one of Miami’s trendiest neighborhoods, the smoky Wynwood Mule come on draft and is served in a customized tin cup featuring the restaurant’s entryway mural.
- Ketel One
- Roasted Pineapple
- Lime & ginger beer
251 NW 25 St
Miami, FL 33127
Stephen Starr’s The Continental features global cuisine and fabulous tiki-inspired cocktails. The Dragonfruit Mule’s bright fuchsia color works beautifully in the mid-century modern setting.
- Dragonfruit pure?e
- Fresh lime
- Fever Tree ginger beer
Where: The Continental Miami
2360 Collins Ave
Miami Beach, FL 33139
A Peruvian twist on the mule crafted by skilled mixologist Joel Mesa:
- Pisco Cuatro Gallos
- Free-Tree Ginger Beer
- Fresh Lime Juice
Where: Pisco y Nazca
8405 Mills Drive Suite #206
Miami, FL 33183