The Irish Mule Puts A Whiskey Twist On The Classic Moscow Version

Call it a dressed-up vodka soda or a modern classic, the Moscow mule has stuck around since the 1940s. The refreshing, bubbly beverage may be most known for the iconic copper mug it's traditionally served in; however, it's really the ginger beer that lends it a unique spin. At the time of its creation in Hollywood, ginger beer-based slings were all the rage, and crafty bartenders managed to market the Moscow mule with a Cold War-era moniker alluding to its vodka base.

Yet, there's a reason ginger beer drinks endured past a fad. The fermented, alcohol-free brew forms a spicy backbone for a variety of cocktails, in addition to being delicious on its own. It's inspired a slew of drinks, such as the rum-based dark and stormy and the tequila-based el diablo. The beverage pairs delectably with just about any spirit — and that includes whiskey, too. While the pairing can be crafted into a ginger-inflected highball, you can also use whiskey to create a spin on the mule's formula by making an Irish mule.

How to make an Irish mule

This whiskey-based Irish mule is the perfect cocktail come St. Patrick's Day (or year-round for whiskey lovers) and can be mixed just as easily as a standard Moscow mule. First, fill a glass or copper mug with ice, then pour in the Irish whiskey. Next, add some lime juice along with an optional syrup, such as ginger or mint. While some bartenders mix these components separately using a cocktail shaker, most simply stir everything in the serving vessel before pouring in the ginger beer. Finally, add a slice of lime and a sprig of mint to the top as garnishes.

The Irish mule recipe varies to match each person's individual tastes. Given whiskey's pronounced flavor, you might want to add less alcohol to tone down the smoky notes. Those open to a boozier take can add more of the spirit. While a Moscow mule often utilizes a one to six vodka to ginger beer ratio, the Irish variant can steer closer to a two to three proportion. A high-quality vodka does make a difference in a mule, but the whiskey's complex flavor will leave an even grander impression. So, reach for a tasty Irish whiskey — such as a single pot still — to craft the tastiest rendition.