Summer Cocktail Season: The New Moscow Mule

A couple of weeks ago I received a text from a friend who was having dinner at DC’s newest taqueria, El Centro, D.F. He asked me if I had ever tried a Moscow Mule. I immediately had a flashback to New Years Eve 1995. I was 15 and my older sister had taken me under her wing to a nightclub in my hometown in England. If you’re familiar with the UK bar scene you’ll know that they’re not too strict on ID and age restriction — I used a fake birth certificate to get in the door — and well, I don’t remember much other than drinking the night away on one too many pre-bottled Smirnoff Mules, to the point of not ever drinking them again.

I had a perverted hope that El Centro, D.F. would be serving these pre-mixed bottles, but my hopes were dashed. Instead I found a seductively crafted cocktail from El Centro’s beverage director, Brennan Adams. I’m not sure what has happened to the Moscow Mule I first encountered and quite frankly, I don’t care. Adams’ version, with its summer fresh tones, splash of beer, and peppery aftertaste, is a whole new kind a mule. I spoke with Adams about his drink, explaining it was too good not to share, and he was kind enough to give me the recipe.


Moscow Mule

3 muddled lime wedges
1.5 oz vodka (El Centro uses Absolut Orient Apple)
1.5 oz ginger-chili simple syrup (I used this recipe as a base, throwing in a jalapeno sliced lengthwise)
Modelo Especial Beer or other neutral beer

Muddle lime wedges in a pint glass. Add the chili-ginger simple syrup and vodka. Fill with ice and shake vigorously. Top with beer and stir to blend.

Note: you can also substitute the vodka with tequila, should that be your preference.

(Recipe courtesy of Brennan Adams)

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  • Maria Swanson June 7, 2011  

    So excited to try this recipe! I had my first (and only) Moscow Mule at Starlite in San Diego. So good and I’ve been wanting to make them – thanks for sharing! You don’t happen to have the recipe for Hybiscus Heat from Boulevard restaurant in San Fran? 🙂

  • deb February 6, 2014  

    how is that new? that’s the same you’ve been getting everywhere else for years… (with slight variations of ginger base / beer)

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