The Cranberry Mule is a fun take on the more traditional Moscow Mule. Perfect as a Thanksgiving cocktail, this drink calls for cranberry, ginger beer and spiced rum, then is topped with sugared cranberries as garnish.
I drank my first Moscow Mule when I was on a photo assignment in Baton Rouge, visiting a hole-in-the-wall bar that offered entirely too many fun cocktails.
I normally don’t drink when I’m working, but after photographing the owner of the establishment, he insisted I try something.
I asked what he recommended, and he said definitively, “The Moscow Mule.”
And so I was introduced to one of my favorite cocktails.
Fast forward a year or two later, and I was in New Orleans having lunch with a friend at Sylvain. We both spotted Moscow Mules on the menu and made the executive decision: we were having a cocktail lunch. (Duh.)
When we mentioned these cocktails to our waiter, he asked if we like gin.
“Of course,” was my response. (Because, well, gin is delicious.)
My friend, Katherine, agreed.
And then he suggested getting the Moscow Mule with gin instead of vodka. And it was delightful.
When I was thinking about drinks to make for Blogsgiving Dinner 2015 (more on this after the recipe!), I knew I wanted to use cranberries as the centerpiece. And while I brainstormed, I thought it would be really fun to do a Thanksgiving take on the Moscow Mule.
So I began tinkering.
I would keep the ginger beer, but instead of lime juice, I’d add unsweetened cranberry juice. To sweeten it up, I poured in some simple syrup. And then for the alcohol, I decided on spiced rum. Because spiced rum and cranberries go together quite marvelously.
To make this drink even more special, I made sugared cranberries as a garnish. (My pal, Ashley, whipped up some gorgeous spiced ones, and I used that as inspiration, even though mine don’t have additional spice.) And even though they’re certainly not necessary and add a lot of time to the total time of this cocktail, they’re a great addition.
Once the cranberries are made, the drink takes about 5 minutes to shake up and serve.
Here’s how you do it:
- 12 oz. fresh cranberries
- ½ cup simple syrup
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 oz. unsweetened cranberry juice
- 3 oz. ginger beer
- 1½ oz. spiced rum
- 1 oz. simple syrup
- Ice, for serving
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place a wire cooling rack on top of the lined baking sheet, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, measure in the simple syrup.
- Toss the cranberries in the simple syrup, removing them with a slotted spoon, then place on the wire cooling rack.
- Refrigerate for 30 minutes, or until the berries are sticky.
- When the berries are sticky, measure the sugar into a large bowl.
- Toss the cranberries in the sugar until coated, then transfer back to the wire cooling rack.
- Coat all the cranberries, then refrigerate for an additional hour before using.
- Place a handful of ice in a copper mug
- Combine the cranberry juice, ginger beer, rum and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker.
- Shake until combined, then pour over ice.
- Serve with sugared cranberries as garnish, and enjoy immediately.
Thanksgiving is all about family, friends and delicious food. Luckily, the food blogging community is all about these things, as well. To celebrate the holiday, Meghan from Cake ‘n Knife and Susannah from Feast + West are hosting Blogsgiving Dinner. And this year, there are more than 60 blogs sharing recipes this week!
The idea is based on an old-fashioned potluck dinner party.
Each blogger is bringing one or more dishes to the party, so be sure to stop by each one and get some ideas for your own Thanksgiving meal. We’ll be posting to social media with the hashtag #blogsgivingdinner, but you can see all the whole menu in Part 1 and Part 2 of the recipe round-up.