best moscow mule richardson texas

Why are Moscow Mules Served in Copper Mugs?

Copper mugs are synonymous with the Moscow mule, but why? Is it just for show? It turns outs, there are both historical – and even scientific – reasons why the copper mug and Moscow Mule are the perfect combination.

History of the Moscow Mule

The history is fuzzy (as is the case with most cocktail legends), but it appears that the copper mug for a Moscow mule could have started as a mere coincidence. Most historians agree that the Moscow Mule was invented sometime around 1940 by Jack Morgan and John Martin. Morgan was the owner of the Cock ‘n’ Bull restaurant in LA and Martin was the newly minted owner of Smirnoff vodka. As legend would have it, the two were having trouble selling their drinks to the public (Cock ‘n’ Bull ginger beer and Smirnoff vodka), so they decided to combine the two to make the Moscow Mule. (We’re pretty glad that worked out!)

Now as for the copper mug, some stories say Morgan had a girlfriend who owned a copper company. Other stories say it was a Russian immigrant who was selling copper for cheap to make ends meet that owned the copper mugs. Either way, Morgan and Martin found cheap copper mugs readily available and, combined with the tangy flavors of the mule, they hit the jackpot.

Scientifically Copper Just Works Better for a Mule

Whether Morgan and Martin realized it or not, the copper mugs were the perfect glass for a mule. Copper is very good at conducting temperature, so when an ice cold mule is poured inside, the glass actually takes on that temperature and keeps the drink frosty cold longer. Also, there is research to support that the copper interacts with the drink and actually enhances the tangy flavors of ginger and lime in the cocktail.

If you’ve made it this far, then we know you’re ready for a mule! Head over to Tricky Fish in Richardson, Texas or Fort Worth, Texas and join us for lunch, happy hour, or dinner. We’ll show you what a great Moscow mule tastes like!

tricky fish copper mug moscow mule

Accidental Success: The Rise of the Moscow Mule

Wouldn’t it be great if we could just stumble across a cocktail – coin a name for it – and then it catch on like wildfire?

So many of the popular cocktails we enjoy today started this way – including the Moscow Mule.

Let’s just say the Moscow Mule started as a cross between good ole fashioned American ingenuity and a complete accident.

In the late 1930s, a company called Heublein bought the rights to Smirnoff vodka, the delicious, smooth vodka we love today. But back in the 1930s, no one was drinking vodka and Americans snubbed it. Here’s where the facts get fuzzy. One story is that Heublein executive John Martin paired up with his buddy Jack Morgan – owner of the Cock n Bull bar in LA – and created the drink to clear an abundance of ginger beer inventory and spark interest in the newly acquired Smirnoff vodka. However, Wes Price, the head bartender at Cock n Bull at the time, also claims that he invented the drink. So who knows?! All we know is that we’re glad someone came up with it!

And as for the copper mugs? Well, it seems they might have come on the scene because Morgan was dating a woman who owned a copper company – seriously. But at the end of the day, it was actually Martin who popularized the Moscow Mule in the copper mug, taking polaroids of bartenders holding the copper-clad drinks in hand and then showing them to the next bar he was trying to persuade to buy Smirnoff vodka/ginger beer. Apparently, it worked.

Cheers to you, John Martin, for bringing us such a tasty cocktail! Ready to take on the best Moscow Mule in Richardson? Visit Tricky Fish today to get one of our delicious mules, an Old Fashioned, or any of our other handcrafted cocktails.