Let me tell you a little bit about my favorite drink of choice — The Moscow Mule. The first time I tasted this libation was after a full-contact game of powder puff (more like full tackle) football.  It was one of those rare hot and humid SF days where the sun was shining over the Pacific blue and the wind was low.

The only thing that could make the day that much better after victory on the football field was an ice cold beverage that felt crisp and refreshing as it poured down my parched throat.

Our entourage headed down the street to The Tipsy Pig, and poured onto the killer outdoor patio (note: the patio is currently being renovated as I write this entry). That is when I saw it: the chilled metallic goblet glistening with condensation. The bartender served the lemony looking beverage to a nearby patron and I watched her eyes light up upon first sip. I immediately ordered a few for our group and have not looked back since.

Moscow Mules are made with vodka, ginger beer and lime. I highly recommend using Russian Standard vodka making sure to add fresh lime juice.  The result is a light, spiced refreshment that is well-balanced, not overly sweet. The ginger beer masks the taste of the vodka, which you can decide if that is a good or bad thing.

If you have a craving for a Moscow Mule in SF, hit up one of the following spots:

The Tipsy Pig: The site of my first Moscow Mule. Also known for an epic white cheddar burger and killer mac & cheese.

Cafe Des Amis: This upscale spot on Union Street has a full bar and will likely class up this beverage.

Elbo Room: A Favorite among Mission locals and those itching for some live music.

Burritt Room: In the Crescent Hotel on Stockton, this bar takes its mixology seriously. Start with the Moscow Mule then graduate on to a more adventurous libation.

Rosewood: This North Beach spot on Broadway Street has an open outdoor patio, dance floor and bar. Often assumed to be closed, it is a hidden gem right in the thick of Chinatown on Broadway.

Anne Pao is a contributing food writer for SF Station and Yum.  When she is not satisfying carnivorous tendencies, you can find her adventuring in the Bay area outdoors.  For more Pao reads check out her blog at http://sftaoofpao.com