You’ve likely heard of the Moscow Mule – a traditional cocktail of vodka, lime juice, and ginger beer served in a copper mug. But it’s not quite as likely that you’ve heard the story behind it.

Once upon a time, the president of the company that introduced A1 to America bought the American rights to Smirnoff at a time no one was drinking vodka. Unsurprisingly, he was drinking his troubles away at his friend’s bar (the Cock ‘n Bull, who happened to have mention he had cases of ginger beer in his basement nobody wanted to drink. Sometime into the afternoon, another poor sap who had a quantity of copper mugs he couldn’t seem to get rid of joined them, and they decided to drunkenly create a yard sale in a cup, combining their unsellable wares in one shot.

After a bit of lime and help from the bartender, the Moscow Mule was born!

My beardy boyfriend has a similar knack for collecting liquors we’re not sure what to do with – mostly flavored whiskies. I love whiskey, but what to do with apple cider-flavored whiskey?

cut apple, thyme, and lemon half

I decided to make like the Cock ‘n Bull boys and turn it into something sellable, so I created a mule variation.


I subbed lemon for the lime to complement the apple, and added some thyme because I won’t pass up a herbaceous note in anything. In my first attempt, the typical ratio of ginger beer to booze (about 2:1) was way too sweet for me, so I cut it back to 1:1. Thus, I bring you the All-American Mule – which is ironic, since the Moscow Mule was created in America, because of American capitalistic efforts…life is funny that way.

whiskey lemon apple ginger cocktail


All-American Mule
Prep time: 
Total time: 
  • 2 oz. apple flavored whiskey
  • ½ oz lemon
  • 1 oz. ginger beer
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • Apple for garnish
  1. Put the thyme sprigs, lemon, and whiskey in a shaker filled with ice. Shake shake shake. Pour into a rocks glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with thinly-sliced apples.