I waited down to the wire to come up with a quick mule for a cocktail contest and ended up coming up with one of the most wonderful cocktails I’ve made in months – a mule Suze cocktail. This drink mixes ginger beer, lime, Italicus and Suze (a bitter French aperitif with flavors of gentian) in an incredible riff on a Moscow Mule.
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What is Suze?
You may have noticed a few cocktails with Suze in them lately, but what is Suze? I cover it in a little more detail in my Suze Sour article, but briefly, it’s a bitter liqueur – much like Campari and other Italian red bitters. But, it’s French and the main flavor component is gentian root – often used in the production of bitters for cocktails.
Originally, like many other bitter spirits, it was used as a medical remedy, but now it’s a great way to add woody bitterness and herbaceousness to cocktails.
Flavors in this Angry Mule Suze Cocktail
Besides Suze, with its bitter woodiness, this cocktail has the spice of ginger beer, a little lime juice, and a touch of Italicus. Italicus is a liqueur with bergamot flavors – so the taste reminds me of Earl Grey tea. Combined with the Suze and the ginger beer, it dials down the bitterness of the Suze and balances it out.
If you love bitter flavors you would thoroughly enjoy this cocktail. The bitterness level tastes similar to a Boulevardier/Negroni. It’s got a sharp bitter bite, but the sweetness of the ginger beer and Italicus counteract that heavy woodiness in the liqueur.
How to Make the Angry Mule
One of the things about this cocktail is that it’s built in the glass so it’s very fast to make and enjoy. Simply add an ounce of Suze, an ounce of Italicus and the lime juice. Stir briefly, fill with ice and top off with ginger beer.
I garnished with lime wheels and mint, but a lime wedge on the top of the cocktail is a great option. Traditionally, mules are served in coppers mugs, but in this case, I wanted to showcase the beautiful yellow color coming from the Suze’s hue.
Other Cocktails You Might Enjoy
- Suze Sour
- Pissed Leprechaun
- Campari Highball
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Recommended Bar Tools
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You probably already have these, but you may need them, too:
- 1 oz Suze
- 1 oz Italicus
- 1/2 lime, juiced
- 2-4 oz Regatta Ginger Beer to top
- Garnish: lime wheel, mint
- Add Suze, Italicus, and lime to your copper mule mix. Stir briefly to combine, add ice, and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a lime and mint and sip away.