The Irish Mule: A Delicious Twist On A Refreshing Favorite

A metal cup is filled with ice, ginger beer, and whiskey, topped with mint, lime, and a yellow straw. It sits on a marble block next to a knife and slice of lime.

The Irish Mule swaps whiskey for vodka in the classic combination with lime, mint, and ginger beer. Sláinte!

A mule is a mule despite its locale, right? Not this mule!  Originally known as the Moscow Mule, the drink was recreated using Irish whiskey instead of vodka and became the Irish Mule…a delicious twist on a well-known favorite!

At a recent family gathering, I found my nephew mixing a drink from a collection of bottles he had supplied.  When I questioned him regarding the intended result, he stated he was making an Irish Mule.  

Granted, my knowledge of cocktails, mixed drinks, liqueurs, and other variations of alcohol other than beer or wine are limited – and I am not too versed in beer or wine either.  But when he said Irish Mule, of course, I was intrigued.  

This drink is the standard mule mixture of lime, (optional) mint, and ginger beer, but swaps Irish whiskey for the usual vodka.  You can use the standard Ginger Ale carbonated soda, but it is recommended you spend the extra cash for ginger beer as the usually higher ginger content makes for a bolder taste. While ginger beer can come as a drink in its own right, it’s not necessary – the Irish whiskey provides plenty of kick. Plus, it’s easy to adjust to make it as sweet/spicy or strong/mild as your tastes prefer…even omitting the spirit makes a delicious mocktail! 

Why the mule is significant to these recipes, I have no idea. Perhaps they were used as pack animals to transport illegal whiskey during prohibition…or maybe it just sounded like a fun name for a drink.  

Below you will find the basic recipe for a fun addition to St. Patty’s day celebrations. There are variations of this recipe, but all have the same core components!

Prep notes from the creative director: For ginger beer, Fever Tree is a long-time favorite of mine, lightly sweetened but with enough ginger kick it’s guaranteed to clear your sinuses! Jameson is a classic Irish whiskey that’s easy to find and a reasonable price point (around $30) – I’ve been particularly enjoying their Stout edition of late – but there are plenty of options to explore that are a completely different experience from their Scottish counterpart. -Cristina


  • 2 ounces Irish whiskey

  • 1/2 of a fresh lime, quartered and squeezed, or one oz bottled lime juice

  • Fresh mint (optional)

  • Ice


  • If you want a stronger mint flavor, start with the lime juice and add some torn mint leaves; muddle lightly to release the mint flavor. If you prefer yours milder, proceed to the next step and simply float the leaves as a garnish.

  • Add plenty of ice and pour 2 ounces of Irish whiskey over the top

  • Fill the remainder of the mug or glass with chilled ginger beer and lightly stir (not too much so the drink doesn’t go flat)

  • Garnish with more mint (optional) and/or a lime wedge

  • Enjoy!

Sláinte – it’s that easy! Team HRL wishes you clear skies and open trails this St. Patrick’s Day.

(And please, don’t consume and then get on horseback; it WILL count as a DUI!)

Barb currently resides in Central Florida with her three horses; when she’s not writing or riding for HRL, she loves to read and travel.