10 Best Vodkas To Use In Your Moscow Mule

The Moscow mule is a cocktail classic for many. The beverage was originally created as a marketing scheme to sell copper mugs and more vodka and ginger beer. According to Moscow Copper. the story goes that a woman named Sophie Berezinski brought the mugs from Russia and teamed up with Smirnoff Vodka distillery's John Martin and owner of the Cock 'n' Bull Jack Morgan in 1941. The three spent hours trying to come up with the perfect concoction and the result was a drink that went down in history. 

Traditionally served in the famed copper mug, the drink contains vodka, ginger beer, and lime juice topped with a lime wedge for garnish (per A Couple Cooks), which is why it is crucial the right vodka is selected or it could ruin the whole taste and aesthetic. That's why we at Tasting Table have compiled a list of 10 vodkas that would work perfectly for your next Moscow mule.

1. Absolut Elyx

Absolut Elyx (42.3% ABV) is a premium luxury bottling with a smooth taste, making it perfect for your next Moscow mule. On the palate, there's a taste of macadamia nuts, creamed cereal and garnishes of white chocolate and buttery notes of freshly baked bread (per Absolut Elyx) that, when combined with the spicy and citrusy carbonated taste of ginger beer, provides a well rounded taste many can appreciate and enjoy. 

This bottling is the right one for anybody looking to feel a little fancy when mixing up their mule. Interestingly enough, it was even distilled by hand in a vintage copper column still from 1921, making serving it in a copper mug a full circle for the vodka. In addition to the Moscow mule, this bottling can also be used in a variety of other cocktails, including spritz, highballs, martinis, spiked punches, and more, making it a great bottling all around.

2. Tito's

Tito's Handmade Vodka is a classic vodka used in many of our favorite mixed drinks, including the beloved Moscow mule. Released in the mid-90's, the vodka (40% ABV) has become one of the most popular bottlings to date, due to the smoothness in its sip. The gluten-free bottling is crafted in old-fashioned pot stills, according to Tito's, allowing for its smooth taste, and is an award-winning drink, with medals from the SF World Spirit Championship, Beverage World, and Spirit Journal. This is also what makes it perfect for someone who isn't looking to have a rough vodka taste to their cocktail. A Moscow mule is a delicacy and must be created with the respect it deserves and Tito's can give it exactly that. What's even better, when you buy a bottle of Tito's, you're helping the brand to give back through its Love, Tito's program that helps to support nonprofits around the world. 

3. Smirnoff No. 21

Smirnoff No. 21 comes from the brand that started it all. The triple-distilled bottling is 10 times filtered with a dry finish, allowing for a smoothness in the drink, according to the Smirnoff website. Kosher certified and gluten-free, Smirnoff No. 21 is an award-winning vodka and comes in at 40% ABV. When mixed in a Moscow mule, it provides an original deliciousness with sweet aspects, allowing the drinker to be submerged back in history with each sip, since it has been around for more than eight decades. There's no need for anybody to wonder what the original Moscow mule tasted like, because with this vodka, you're able to know for yourself. The brand has even released its own Moscow Mule recipe.

Smirnoff No. 21 is a classic for the Moscow mule and it's a must that you enjoy it within one at least once. You never know, it may just become your favorite. 

4. Ciroc Snap Frost Vodka

Ciroc Snap Frost, also known as Ciroc Ultra-Premium Vodka, is a smooth, sweet, and fruity all-around vodka. Described by Vine Pair as "the perfect blank canvas for cocktails," it is no surprise it would make it onto this list. This gluten-free vodka is five-times distilled from French grapes and has a 40% ABV, making it a great choice for Moscow mules and a variety of other cocktails, as it provides a citrusy aroma and fruity palate that blends well with most drink choices, mule or not. When it's fruity profile is paired with lime juice and ginger beer, it creates a sweet combination, one fans of Moscow mules will want to enjoy during any celebration. Those not looking to spend too much on a bottle of vodka for their mules will want to take a look at this one, as it is available year-round for only $31. 

5. Luksusowa

One bottling some may not think of for a Moscow mule is one that has been around for almost a century, a polish potato vodka called Luksusowa. The award-winning vodka was first created in 1928, with production beginning a year later, according to its official website. It is bottled at 40% ABV and is a natural bottling, making it a great, lightweight ingredient for a Moscow mule. When the cocktail is created with this vodka, it lets the ginger beer take over and shies away just enough for you to be able to enjoy the other flavors in the mule, as it doesn't have any flavorings of its own. Those looking to be able to just enjoy a Moscow mule without the vodka being too overpowering may find exactly what they are looking for with this bottling and more, as it is low in carbs and fat, so we can say it's a somewhat healthy choice. 

6. Ketel One Vodka

Ketel One Vodka is a citrusy bottling that will mix well with the lime and ginger beer of a Moscow mule. Created using European wheat and a combination of modern and traditional distilling techniques sure to make a delicious bottling, according to the Ketel One official website, the premium vodka offers light flavoring, providing a taste that isn't too overpowering for you to still be able to enjoy your Russian-themed drink, with a silkiness going down, which is just what you want in a cocktail after a rough day. And of course, how would it be one of the best vodkas for a Moscow mule if it didn't have its own mule recipe for fans of the brand to enjoy? 

This award-winning vodka has earned itself 98 Points from the September/ October 2014 edition of Cigar & Spirits Magazine and was voted the #1 Best Selling Vodka by Drink International's 50 Best Bars Brand Report 2016, so you know its bound to create a marvelous mule. 

7. Three Olives Vodka

Three Olives Vodka provides subtle buttercream, vanilla bean, eucalyptus, and wood flavorings, according to its official website, making it a unique and curious bottling to create a Moscow mule with, which makes it all the more tempting. With the brand's own mule recipe for the bottling, it calls for two parts Three Olives Vodka with 3/4ths parts lime juice and ginger beer with a fun recommendation — adding three cucumber slices and Angostura bitters. Three Olives Vodka allows for a sweet and fresh flavoring in your Moscow mule, one you can enjoy out in the fall breeze, and comes in multiple flavorings if you'd like to spice things up a bit, including pink grapefruit, grape, orange, blueberry, and more. However, its original flavoring provides just what you need for your classic Moscow mule cocktail and it is a must that you enjoy it in your mule, at least once. 

8. Grey Goose

Created in France, Grey Goose Vodka is made from soft winter wheat and Gensac spring water, allowing for a natural flavoring, much like the other ingredients in a Moscow mule. Official tasting notes from the brand speak of floral scents on the nose, a sweet and round palate and a bold toffee finish, according to the Grey Goose website. With high ratings pretty much all around, one reviewer praised its position in cocktails, stating, "Grey Goose Vodka has always been my go-to vodka for its crisp, clean taste that enhances my drinks. I've found other vodkas obscure cocktails by overtaking with their strong taste — Grey Goose does the opposite." 

Much like other vodkas on this list, Grey Goose doesn't want to take the spotlight over the ginger beer and lime juice in a mule. Its distillers understand that teamwork makes the dream work and the liquor provides you with just that — your dream Moscow mule. Grey Goose's recipe for the cocktail recommends adding a slice of ginger to boost that flavoring.

9. Crystal Head

Crystal Head Vodka is an edgy drink, encased in a skull-shaped bottle, but don't let that scare you away. Crafted from Canadian corn, distilled four times, and blended with water from Newfoundland, the vodka is filtered seven times, three through layers of semi-precious crystals known as Herkimer diamonds, which also are melted into the glass of the bottle, according to its official liquor bio. Whew, that's a lot that goes into this spirit. This all amounts to making it great vodka for a Moscow mule. 

With all that hard work in the crafting process, you can guarantee the vodka is going to work just as hard to provide delicious flavoring to your cocktail, with "neutral grain aromas," containing citrus, moving into vanilla on the palate, and a "creamy finish" (per Crystal Head Vodka), allowing your drink to go down smoothly. Perhaps it's a bottling not many would think of for their mule, but it is one that will take you on an adventure with your mule, and one that you won't regret. 

10. Hangar 1 Vodka

Hangar 1 is all about the floral and fruity notes in its bottling, and brings them along for the ride in a Moscow mule too. It's a balanced vodka created from a blend of wine grapes and Midwestern grains, according to the brand's official website, and can be used in a variety of cocktails. With the fruity Asian pear note standing back some and the floral prominent in the bottling, it creates a nice contrast of flavors when used in a Moscow mule. 

In fact, the brand has its own mule recipe called "Alameda Mule," which calls for lemon juice instead of lime, making it all the more interesting. Hangar 1 also comes in other flavors, such as Buddha's Hand Citron, Makrut Lime, and Madarin Blossom, all of which would also add something extra to a Moscow mule's flavoring in a delicious way. Whichever bottling you chose, it's sure to make your mule into something special — and one you won't want to stop drinking.