You may be an avid Moscow Mule drinker. You may have just heard about the drink today. Maybe you went to a party and everybody was three sheets to the wind while downing Moscow Mules in shiny mugs. No matter your history with the delightful cocktail one question always comes up – why are Moscow Mules served in copper cups?
The Elusive Copper Cup
Moscow Mule mug, copper drinking mug, copper cup, or whatever you want to call it – the fact of the matter is you can only drinking a mule with some type of copper contraption. Sure, you can down the cocktail without a proper mug, but it just wouldn’t be the same.
All drinks have a “proper” way in which they should be served. Some drinks like the highball or the martini even have a special glass. A Moscow Mule is no different in this manner. Just like you wouldn’t drink an apple martini out of a beer mug – you won’t want to drink your Moscow Mule out of anything other than a copper cup.
So why are Moscow Mules served in copper cups? Here are three reasons why:
#1 – Perfect Temperature
Any experienced alcoholic will tell you that drinking out of a copper mug offers a cool sensation that is hard to beat. Heavy drinkers have been downing chilled drinks in copper cups for centuries. Mugs made of copper become cold the instant you pour the drink inside them. This rapid change in temperature offers a near frozen sensation as you down your first sip of a Moscow Mule.
Copper is one of the best metals at insulating cold temperatures of liquid. As such, many have found a Moscow Mule to be one of their favorite summer time drinks. The handle on a mule mug also keeps the drink cold by ensuring your hot hands stay away from the walls of the cup – leaving your chilled cocktail safe inside the mug.
#2 – Taste Bud Benefits
Temperature certainly isn’t the only reason why are Moscow Mules served in copper cups. Using a copper mug will actually ensure your cocktail tastes better! Now I will warn you – the taste benefits of your copper mug will be directly related to the type of mug you use and the ingredients you choose.
A mule is made up of ginger beer, vodka, and lime. When the vodka touches the walls of the mug, a chemical reaction is said to occur and the copper begins to oxidize a bit. This boosts the flavor of the vodka. As well, the copper will begin to get colder as the drink sits inside the mug. Cold copper can increase the amount of bubbles from the carbonated ginger beer – allowing for maximum levels of fizz in your Moscow Mule.
Finally, the copper mug has a slight effect on the lime juice. Heightening the citrus notes and flavor and reducing any acidity allows the lime flavor to offer a softer compliment to the spicy nature of the ginger beer. Combined these small changes in flavor create a unique cocktail that many have come to love.
#3 – Style Points
Last, but not least – you’ll look pretty cool sipping a Moscow Mule from a shiny copper cup. While the temperature and the flavor are important aspects of this timeless drink – the main reason why are Moscow Mules served in copper cups is because you’re going to look pretty darn cool as you drink one.
The Most Important Part
You wouldn’t serve a martini in a coffee mug. And you shouldn’t serve a Moscow Mule in anything other than a copper mug. However, the type of copper mug is import. Many Moscow Mule mugs are made with only a sheet of nickel. If budget is a concern, then you may want to check out these nickel-plated mugs. If you want the real deal, then you’ll want to purchase Moscow Mule mugs made with only copper.
So why are Moscow Mules made with copper cups? I’d suggest ordering these real copper mugs and finding out for yourself.