The Best Margarita
For me (Tara), 2017 was the year of the Margarita and my quest to find the best one. I wrote a blog in January about my favourite. Now 2018 is the year of the Mule. The switch actually happened at Christmas 2017 while staying at a timeshare in Florida with my mom over the holidays. The tiki bar at the hotel had Moscow Mules on special from 4pm to 6pm on our first day. We tried them and liked them. We got to know the bartender and over the course of the week tried several different variations. Since then I have tried some variation of Mule wherever we go.

It’s all in the Cup
OK not all, since the ingredients are important too. But, if your Mule is not served in a copper cup then its not actually a Mule. That’s my very strong opinion anyway! Many places offer a Mule now, but often it is served in a standard cocktail glass. After my first mistake I now always ask before ordering.

The copper cup not only symbolizes decades of tradition it also essential to the temperature of a proper Mule. The copper is highly effective at insulating the cold temperature of any liquid, especially good for summertime drinking. Cold copper also has a tendency to maximize the bubbles of the carbonated ginger beer. But it might just come down to presentation. Just like a martini just doesn’t seem right unless it’s in the proper glass so too the Mule needs the right cup. I did have one very good Mule (at a Mexican restaurant in San Diego) that came close without the cup, but just not quite.

Our cruise line of choice (NCL) was running a Mule special on our last cruise in which you could purchase the cups. Since we do not have a home, a set of 4 would not fit in my suitcase. But after the cruise (and I told my mom about the cups) she brought me 2 originals, circa 1970, from behind her bar at home. Thanks Mom!

Some cocktail traditionalists believe that there is only one way to make a Mule – with vodka, lime juice, ginger beer, ice and a lime wedge for garnish. According to most versions of the history of the Moscow Mule the vodka used was Smirnoff as it was the owner of the company that created the drink. In the 1950’s and 60’s marketing campaigns even advertised the ‘Smirnoff Mule’. In my study to find the best Mule I have encountered many variations and many names. The ginger beer and lime juice are standard but the alcohol itself, the garnish and any extra additions vary:

Kentucky Mule: Bourbon and bitters
Irish Mule: Jameson and mint
Mexican Mule: Tequila and jalapeno
Jamaican Mule: Spiced or Dark Rum and mint

I have also seen versions made with gin as well as fruit, coffee, liqueurs and a whole host of other items added to the basic vodka recipe. But so far my tendency is to prefer the original Moscow version with no fussy add ons, or possibly the Kentucky (which Jeff likes).

The quest for the best Mule continues so watch for a post about my favourite at the end of the year.

We, Jeff and Tara Ciecko of CK Golf write two blogs, one is our 19th Hole Blog where we share personal experiences and the other an Industry Blog where we comment on general business and internet marketing best practices, sales strategies and give golf industry related opinions. We have owned CK Golf  for 10 years and provide marketing, social media and business services to the golf and other industries. As of August 2016 our life and our business have been ‘location independent’. Our 19th Hole Blog is about the places we visit and the things we do. If you have any questions or comments, or happen to be in the same location as us please reach out and contact us anytime.