ODE TO THE MOSCOW MULE or How to Become a Hipster Drink Again

For @angela3950 😉
  1. The Moscow Mule is an excellent example of a "creeper" cocktail, mainly due to it's potency. Any bartender will tell you that this should be called a: "vodka buck" or a highball, both of which are considered cocktail forms today.
    Anything with a liquor and ginger ale or beer base is considered a: "buck".
  2. Although the Moscow Mule is not the first vodka drink, it was the drink that popularized vodka here in the U.S. Vodka has been around done before Prohibition as an import, selling mainly to Eastern Europeans who drank it straight. Most Americans kind of considered it an amusing novelty: interesting, but what do you make with it?
  3. Turn the clock forward to 1934. Rudolf Kunetchansky secured the rights from his friend Vladimir Smirnov (exiled from Russia to France in 1917 during the Russian Revolution) to produce his family's vodka (albeit under the spelling of his French father's surname) in America.
  4. Hence: "Smirnoff" vodka.
  5. The vodka didn't sell well. Rudolf's business was failing miserably. In 1939, he sold the brand to John Martin, an executive for Heublin Club Cocktails (the club soda producer at time - more on that later) and agreed to keep Rudolf on as an account executive. Again, even Hueblin couldn't figure out how to use this damn vodka.
  6. One day, Martin happened to be at the Cock and Bull club in downtown Los Angeles with the owner Jack Morgan. Morgan had all this ginger beer, but didn't know what to do with it.
    Interestingly, there is a ginger beer company named "Cock and Bull". It is quite good, and more on the spicy side. Coincidence?
  7. Morgan's girlfriend had inherited a factory that produced copper goods, specifically copper mugs. As such, Martin and Morgan put together this drink to try to turn a profit.
  8. The merging of these disparate elements thus created the "vodka" version of the "Mamie Taylor". Hence, the Moscow Mule was born.
  9. The drink became extremely popular during that L.A. summer, as legend has that it was insanely hot. Here is the classic recipe:
  10. 2 oz. of vodka. I am a huge fan of Beluga.
  11. Juice of 1/2 a lime.
  12. Ginger beer or ale. Stick with ginger beer. I prefer Bundaberg's.
  13. Squeeze the lime into a copper Moscow Mule mug.
  14. Drop the spent lime shell into the mug.
  15. Add ice cubes, the vodka, and fill with ginger beer.
  16. Okay. The very first time I had this drink, I was genuinely blown away. The lime and ginger beer mask a fucking gobsmack of vodka. It is still a delicious, refreshing drink.
  17. The drink actually rose in popularity over the years, and you can still find it around anywhere. The copper mugs are even sold in the fancy housewares stores. Smirnoff, Rudolf, Martin and Morgan would be proud.
  18. I don't know if I'd call this a "hipster" drink in so much as more of an interesting story about financial failure and/or necessity being the mother of invention. Or, maybe invention being the mother of necessity?
  19. Ta-da. Cheers!