Sometimes all I want is a simple, refreshing drink with two or three ingredients—no shaker required. This one is easy to make yet has a unique flavor, thanks to ginger beer. The Moscow Mule was created by the Cock n Bull Pub in Hollywood in the late ’40s as an attempt to popularize vodka, which hadn’t exactly caught on with the American drinking crowd yet. By the early ’60s, it was a popular drink and vodka started to find its way into more bars. (The product placement with Roger Sterling and his vodka on “Mad Men” is also historically accurate, since clear and odorless vodka was a hit with the hard-drinking office crowd.) The traditional way to serve it is in a chilled copper mug, but unless you’re obsessed with barware, any tall glass will do.
When it’s 90 degrees out and I want a little refreshment, this drink will do the job and do it well! I used Cock n Bull ginger beer, but I also like Fentiman’s, Bundaberg, and Reed’s. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can even make your own ginger beer. I used FAIR quinoa vodka, which I have to say really floats my boat. I like a lot of lime in my Moscow Mule, so I go with a shot of vodka and 4 ounces of ginger beer. But you can adjust that to taste.
1 1/2 – 2 ounces vodka
1/2 ounce fresh-squeezed lime juice (about 1/2 a lime)
4 – 6 ounces ginger beer
Squeeze in the lime juice into a Collins glass (or chilled copper mug) and put the spent hull in the glass. Add ice cubes, then pour in the vodka and ginger beer.