Last summer (not this past summer), YA and I had dinner with friends at their apartment in Uptown; they served us Moscow Mules.  I enjoyed them quite a bit, in fact YA drove home! 

YA must have remembered that night as she gave me a set of copper cups for Solstice.  It’s a pretty set and includes a shot glass (which is good, since I didn’t have one) and little copper straws and even some coasters.  I made a stop at the liquor store the next morning for ginger beer and vodka.  Turns out I needed some vodka lessons.  I ended up choosing a local brand – chosen mostly because I liked the label – but the gal at the store said it was a good brand, and good value for the price!  Then I stopped at Kowalskis for limes. 

I haven’t actually made a Moscow Mule yet – I have one more day of my wine advent calendar.  The idea of wine and then vodka on the same day doesn’t seem like the best idea.  Although the more I think about it, 2020 has been a year that cries out for all kinds of alcoholic consumption!

Do you have a favorite cocktail?  Beverage?  Have you been indulging more this year?

39 thoughts on “Mules”

  1. Daughter had mimosas a couple of times during her visit. We really aren’t mixed drinks fans.

    When I was about 13, whenever we would go out to eat any of the various steak houses around Luverne, my dad would order a Tom Collins, and pretend it was for him but let me drink it. He had been a bar tender for a little while before my birth, and knew how to make lots of mixed drinks. He only drank beer, though. I remember really liking the Collinses, which I think were made with gin. I haven’t bought gin for decades.

    Our wine consumption has increased since March.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. i discovered i really like s. pellagrino green italian sparkling water they serve all over europe all the time. i never bought it because it’s a buck a bottle but it’s the best and somehow holds its carbonation forever. it’s for smaller bubbles i don’t know how but it’s better than lacroix or h2o.
    my old mixed wasn’t very mixed it was
    stolichnaya and a fistful of olives or a dirty martini with stolies and olive juice
    a friends dad used to keep vodka in the freezer with olives ( it doesn’t freeze but goes down smooth at 30 degrees
    i never tried that

    Liked by 3 people

  3. First couple of years I was teaching, a group of us headed out at 3:05 on Friday afternoons to a nearby pub, where I had vodka martini(s) with two olives. Then I moved from San Francisco down on the coast and had to drive 45 minutes to get home, so learned to limit that a bit more..

    When we moved to Winona 4+ years ago, I was in the habit of having at least on mini-bottle (from a 4-pack) of red wine every evening. I’m not sure what happened, but gradually I’ve cut back to where I have half of one of those, and just some evenings. Before Covid, I went out 2-3 evenings a week, for one thing. But now that I’m home all the time, if I drink ANY wine I’ll probably fall asleep in my chair while reading.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Alcohol consumption probably hasn’t changed much during COVID, although it seems like it some days just because the stress is there to prompt us to have a drink. But for decades, we’ve drunk what seems like a lot more than most people. HOWEVER, we never binge drink. It’s basically a bottle of wine between the two of us each evening before, during, and after dinner. We model ourselves after the European custom of wine as an accompaniment to the meal, not an end unto itself. My wife has been what I’d call officially drunk maybe twice in her life. I’ve been pleasantly buzzed now and then, but never considered myself to be “drunk” in terms of being sloppy (I love you, man!), out of control, passed out, hangover, etc.

    Perhaps we’ll have a glass of port as a nightcap (only in months containing an “R”), sometimes a cocktail before dinner. My wife likes a glass of wine with her weekly zoom gal pals and her monthly book club.

    During golf season, I used to have a beer or two after the round. Nowadays, one beer is usually enough.

    I like Moscow Mules too. Had my first one last Christmas. I favor gin & tonics or screwdrivers. Not much into the brown liquors. Did shots only once in my life–back in college down in Mexico City with the trumpet section of the U of M jazz ensemble (yours truly was 4th trumpet). Tequila, lime, salt, the real deal.

    Had a very tasty Christmas cocktail last week with sparkling wine, ruby port, and pomegranate juice, and a spritz of lemon zest. A good margarita goes well with spicy food (as does beer)

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 4 people

  5. I don’t think we’ve ever had a bar in the house. By that I mean, we’ve never had a collection of bottles of hard liquor from which to concoct cocktails. Vodka, gin, rum, tequila, bourbon, or whatever other choices there are. We’ve occasionally had a bottle of one of those, and would then enjoy a mixed drink until it was gone. Of course, then we’d also have to make sure to have on hand whatever was needed to create that drink: orange juice, tomato juice, tonic water, limes, olives, etc. Just seems like more effort and expense than I’ve ever really felt I could justify.

    That said, I do enjoy a good cocktail. My friend, Bob Parker, who was the co-owner and creator of the now defunct Ward 6 restaurant and bar on St. Paul’s East Side is an expert mixologist, and I’ve always enjoyed a good aperitif concocted by him.

    This time of year you’ll usually find a bottle of Aalborg akvavit in our freezer; a good snaps is a necessity for the traditional Christmas Day “Store kolde bord.” But since there wasn’t much point in putting that on for just two people, no such luck this year. Maybe I should get a bottle for New Year’s Eve.

    I like a glass of red wine with my dinner, and depending on how elaborate and long the preparations, a glass or two while I’m cooking, as well. Husband rarely drinks wine, likes the occasional beer, and savors a nightcap of a glass of good single malt Scotch. Our consumption hasn’t changed during the pandemic. We’ll go weeks with no alcohol at all, simply because neither of us will make the effort to go buy some. Which reminds me, I’m fresh out of red wine, better get over to Morelli’s.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. No it’s served blastingly cold. First you put the vodka in, then ice, then ginger beer and lime. Then a little more ice if there’s room.


  6. This afternoon I will have two Bloody Marys in memorial to the day of infamy, December 28, 1975.
    Vikings Cowboys.
    Nate Wright flattened by Drew Pearson. No penalty called. Hail Mary pass completed. Greatest football fraud in NFL history.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. i was there and watched the whisky bottle spin through the air and cheered as it hit the ref
      felt very guilty but still very pissed at the ref
      then found out it was an acquaintance who had such good aim

      Liked by 3 people

  7. Reading comments has reminded me of two things – I like some liqueurs in place of a cocktail, or after dinner, if it’s an “event”. Cointreau, Chamborde, Grand Marnier.. And I enjoy warm things like spiced mulled wine at holiday gatherings.

    And I should note that, although I hardly drink at home anymore, get me to a party and we should have a designated driver.

    Liked by 4 people

  8. I will admit that I enjoyed the wine advent calendar but it is amazing to me that I had a glass of wine every day for 24 days. That has never happened in my lifetime.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Recent topics pass me by. Ignore royalty. But Prime has a three part series on all the things owned by Prince of Wales. Lots of land and broadmore prison. Very interesting to see what he does, some interesting rules he sets for use of land by renters. Slanted his way but interesting. He seems as folksy as his mother. I don’t get Christmas or birthday presents and have not for a view years. My choice. Fn to just sit and watch. And do not drink. My drugs and alcohol don’t agree with each other. Don’t miss it except every now and then a good rich local brew dark beer or from a little corner shop here which brings in beer from all around U.S. and Germany. I used to like rum, just rum. Don’t like flavored drinks.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yikes. I cannot write clearly anymore. I only want a dark beer every now and then. Do not drink one. My eyesight is worse lately. Sigh. apologize.

      Liked by 2 people

  10. Afternoon.
    Amaretto Sours are my drink of choice. I’m trying to learn more about whiskeys / bourbons / scotch’s. But my sister bought me a bottle of Wild Turkey Honey Whiskey and we sure like that. On the rocks. We keep it in the fridge and take sips of it every so often…probably more this year. And I really do mean just a swig. Or two. Maybe once / month I’ll pour a glass. I tease Kelly; if she shares it with me, she takes a lot bigger swallows than I do; I just sip it, she DRINKS it. I need a bigger glass if I’m going to share.
    We also have a bottle of Caramel flavored Baileys Irish creme in the fridge. *That’s* good. And in the freezer downstairs is a bottle of Ouzo. Left over from a Christmas celebration back in 2014. A six pack of beer will last a year.

    We had three bottles of red wine, received as gifts, sitting on the kitchen counter. Been there a few years we think. Decided we needed to try them and get them off the counter. Some of you may know, temperature extremes are not good for wine. We know that. But still, there they sat though our hot humid summers and cool falls, then heated winters. The first one was not good. One sip and down the drain.
    Same w/ the second. The third we just skipped the sip and went right to the drain.
    Since we were on a roll, we knew there was some more bottles in the pantry. Again, been there for years. We didn’t even try the wines, just dumped them. And then WAAAY in the back, 4 bottles of champagne. I think we got some as wedding presents. Two of the bottles were only half full. Judging by the stain on the wood and the sticky foil, they’ve leaked a bit. I took them out on the deck and tried “sabrage”. (knocking the top off with a saber) Well, with the back of a heavy kitchen knife. This champagne was old. It didn’t even fizz out the top… It hissed a little bit. But I did knock the top off and that was kinda fun.

    Back in my younger days we’d go out after the show and one place always had 2;1 on mixed drinks. Four Amaretto Sours was my limit. Five and I had to drive home with one eye closed. These days drinking at home just puts me to sleep.

    I don’t want to talk about the cast party where me and my cast-mates won the ‘Most champagne consumed’ award. It was something like 2+ bottles / person. I haven’t liked champagne since.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. I got to make my own gin once in a little shop in London. I used mostly fruity aromatics before they “distilled it.” But even the fact that I had had a hand in the making of the gin didn’t make it any more tasty to me, although the experience itself was a lot of fun.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I usually stick to wine. Splitting a bottle with my sister or a friend with dinner works out to just the right amount. Usually red, though I can do white too.

    When I get a mixed drink, it’s usually a gin and tonic, if it’s summer. Although there are several restaurants that make a really good margarita.

    My mother wasn’t very into any kind of alcohol, but if we were at a restaurant and it was a special occasion she would order an old fashioned. I learned how to make them, with bourbon, and the sugar cube and the bitters and all. Haven’t had one in probably fifteen years though.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. When I’d be taking care of Etna, my friend Helen’s ninety-something old mother, she always had a Manhattan in late afternoon, before dinner. I learned to me them for her. Etna has been gone now, over ten years, and I don’t think I’ve had one since. That’s who I want to become if I live that long, a little old lady, who enjoys a daily, pleasant afternoon drink with a friend.

      Liked by 3 people

  13. Brandy Alexanders are good. I mean, it’s ice cream; what’s not to like!

    Again, Theater has taught me so much.
    1985 and 1986 I was in Melodrama’s at the Mantorville Opera House. Between shows we’d run across the street to the Hubble House for lunch. The bar menu showed what was in the drinks. I learned about Tom Collins, Screwdrivers, Pina Colada’s, and the Rusty Nail. Maybe others I don’t recall anymore.
    Estabans was the place right behind the Rep theater. They had ‘Simpatico’ beer and that was really good. Probably had some daiquiri’s there.
    Henry Wellingtons was the place with 2/1’s. Went there for years. One night the owner carded us and Kelly didn’t have a license and wouldn’t serve her. We’d been there for years. That was it for Wellingtons.
    Upstairs was Newts and the best bartender and popcorn. And good music.
    Tinklers was down the street; John was the maitre de. He was just all around cool. And Willy; one of the waiters knew our orders when we came in. Teriyaki wings besides the buffalo wings. And hot fudge Sunday’s to die for!
    But it was the Holiday Inn bar, home of the “Libby Lounge” – a play on words for the “Lobby Lounge” next to the Feast and Foot lights Dinner Theater where I learned about Brandy Alexanders.

    The Rusty nail is Whisky Scotch and Drambuie. I recall it being pretty rough. I use it as punishment these days. Not for myself, for others. My board operators, if they’re old enough to drink. If they make 3 mistakes – BIG mistakes; big enough the audience notices, then they are supposed to go drink one of those as punishment. I haven’t actually had anyone reach that point.

    Liked by 4 people

  14. I’m really not a very big drinker. My folks did not drink when I was growing up. My father was the son of an alcoholic who made his and his mom’s life miserable when he was a child. My grandfather on my mom side wasn’t an alcoholic but had a lot of problems with anger that were occasionally fueled by alcohol. So there was no booze The one and only time I ordered a mixed drink in front of my parents was when I was 25. The look I got from my mother was enough that I have never ordered a mixed drink in her company ever again.

    Liked by 3 people

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