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In Bars & Clubs Commentary

Is a Moscow Mule still a Moscow Mule if it's not served in a copper cup?

Social Circle: Does the type of vessel matter when consuming a drink?


"Bar Month" at OnMilwaukee.com – brought to you by Absolut, Avion, Fireball, Pama, Red Stag and 2 Gingers – is back for another round! The whole month of February, we're serving up intoxicatingly fun articles on bars and clubs – including guides, the latest trends, bar reviews, the results of our Best of Bars poll and more. Grab a designated driver and dive in!

Does a Moscow Mule taste better when served in a copper cup? Must a Guinness be served in a pint glass? In general, does the drinking vessel matter when consuming alcoholic beverages?

These are the questions the Social Circle responded to this week. Feel free to chime in, too, via the Talkback feature.

Cheers, Milwaukee!

Jon Adler: "The very last drink of the night (the one I should have said no to) is almost always drank out of my own shoe, so yes!"

Jim Carney: "Nothing tastes better than a properly put together Sazerac served out of a perfectly sun bleached skull of my enemy. Or a tequila rose served out of a crystal vase."

Steph Davies: "According to my husband, if the bar doesn't have a copper cup, they aren't serving Moscow Mules."

Christopher Graham: "It also helps the bartender remember what people are drinking based on their glass. When you're slinging drinks to a packed bar, every little thing helps."

Richard Kerhin: "I'm sure that it matters little to the actual taste of the liquid in the vessel, but the experience differs greatly when accounting for the type of glass, etc. Part of the experience of drinking a Moscow Mule is the cold metal forming a little frost as you drink it. The pint glass is part of the overall experience of having a Guinness. Drinking a great wine from a Riedel Sommelier varietal specific glass partially enhances the experience."

Paul Kloster: "Certain beers / cocktails require specific drinking vessels, there's just no two ways about it."

Jonathan Maricle: "I may sound like a snob here but there are many instances where a certain beverage should be served in a specific type of glass. The main reason is so that it hits your palate a certain way."

Daniel Nathan: "Brandy in a snifter, pale ale in a pint and Bud Light in a can."

Niamh NicCarthaigh: "The type of vessel it's served in makes a difference in the taste of the beverage because of the way your mouth opens (and taste buds react) depending on the rim / size / material of the vessel. I have no idea what a Moscow Mule is but my guess is the copper has an effect on the taste, as well as the cup shape. Guinness doesn't necessarily have to be a pint but a pint-shaped glass."

Ryan Harrington: "Of course. What a silly question. It's what separates us from lesser species."

Maria Holden Raboin: "Nope. There is an amazing restaurant here (California) that was named one of the 70 best in the world and their Moscow Mule comes in a glass. And you know what? It's the best damn one I've ever had."

Ander Rubin: "It does make a difference for many drinks. It's also fun! Hence the Belgian beer glasses I bought recently."

Carrie Snopeck: "Yes, it's part of the whole experience. The glass is symbolic of the occasion and will trigger memories of the last time you held that same vessel. It's both sensory and cultural. Don't you feel different holding a pint glass vs. a martini glass? You'll probably even be dressed differently, and even act differently."

Michelle Spack Westrich: "I gladly turn over my ID to enjoy the pleasure of said cocktail in said receptacle. Nothing like it in the mug!"

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