Best Copper Mugs
Those of you who enjoy your alcoholic beverages, you are probably aware that copper mugs are often associated with Moscow Mules. While these types of cups can be used for more beverages than just a Moscow Mule, this is what they are famous for. The primary reason is this type of a mug has excellent insulation capabilities and will get the cocktail ice cold. In fact, it is only ideal for cold drinks because, with hot beverages, you will end up burning your lips. But, though these are dubbed copper mugs, you need to be aware that not all models out there will be 100 percent copper. Some will have interior metal linings and may also be copper plated but not genuine copper. To be honest, it can get quite tricky to distinguish the differences between the styles and which one you prefer. With the assistance of this guide, though, we hope to make that a bit easier.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 2.75 hrs of research
It is coated with food-grade lacquer to avoid tarnishing
Each piece is polished by hand
Each mug is made by a master craftsman
10 BEST COPPER MUGS
1. Advanced Mixology
It is coated with food-grade lacquer to avoid tarnishing
Each piece is polished by hand
Each mug is made by a master craftsman
They are a bit thinner than some buyers expected
If you want to go off of sheer popularity, then this next listing is for you. Of course, it certainly is never a bad thing when hundreds of buyers share their enthusiasm for a particular product such as this.Read more
Advanced Mixology only goes with the best for their products and that is evident here as they used 22-gauge copper to make up their model (with no other metal to speak of).
As with the other top-end models on this list, this actually does not have an additional metal lining and relies on the lone metal to deliver ice-cold refreshment.
This is utterly marvelous here. To keep it short, these models have a tarnish-resistant coating, have been crafted by craftsman that have 10 years of experience, and have taken 72 hours to complete.
Again, the handles here have been welded and not riveted. Also, they are shaped to naturally fit the shape of your hands.
On top of the fact that you get two, 16-ounce cups you also receive two wooden coasters with your purchase.
If Advanced Mixology would have engineered their models to be a bit thicker, then we could be talking about them headlining this list. Instead, they are just underneath the top three (which is far from something to scoff at).
Backed by a money-back guarantee
Comes in a pack of two
Made of 22-gauge metal
Despite the claims, this is not dishwasher safe
This two-pack is a lot like the top model on this list in that it is comprised of 100 percent copper. But, Nozdrovia also used a 22-gauge variety to keep it in accordance with the Moscow Mule legend.Read more
Yep, it does not get much better than this in the world of Moscow Mule mugs. The 22-gauge copper was just alluded to and it provides a fantastic experience.
The natural lining of copper, even though this is technically not lined, ensures that your drinks are going to stay colder for longer periods of time.
Due to the pure hammered barrel, you are not going to find a truer Moscow Mule experience out there as the authenticity here is off the charts.
Based on customer feedback, Nozdrovia improved their handle and optimized it for comfort. Also, instead of rivets, they went with a rivetless seam to prevent leaking over time.
While there are other sellers out there who will offer you more of a packaged deal, this still comes with two cups for your convenience.
To be completely honest, this and the top model on this list were a toss-up. You could flip a coin, that is how close they are in quality, and that certainly says a lot.
3. Hammered Mug
Sports very thick walls
It is skillfully hammered
There is no plating or interior lining
The lip of the cup has a gap and it makes washing more of a pain
Unlike some of the other options on this list, this right here is crafted of 100 percent pure copper and has no other metal whatsoever. Plus, due to the thick walls, your drinks will be kept ice cold.Read more
As mentioned, there are no other metals in this mug. There is no nickel, tin or steel to worry about and for some of you that will be just perfect.
No, this does not have an interior lining. Instead, it is fully authentic and it is going to keep your drink chilled for a long time due to the thick walls.
This right here sports a very unique hammered appeal and overall, they do look very sleek. For the record, this was hammered by hand.
Due to the fact that the handle on this model is welded on, there are no rivets to worry about (or better yet worry about leaking).
Now, this is actually not a packaged deal and you only receive the one 16-ounce mug. But, you do get a bonus recipe book and also a wired paper clip with your purchase.
What a true beauty this is. It is hard to come up with words to describe just how masterful of a design this is. Just buy it and see for yourself.
4. Morken Barware Moscow
Weighs 50 percent more for added strength
Has a beveled base
Made with 22-gauge metal
Many buyers claim the finish does not hold up that well
This is the third straight model that is not copper plated nor is it lined with any additional metal. For true purists of the old alcoholic beverage, this really is the only way to go.Read more
It is claimed by Morken Barware that their mugs weigh 50 percent more and cost twice as much as other sellers as they use twice the 22-gauge copper in their construction.
As is claimed, there is no lacquer in the interior but there are imitations out there with a nickel, tin, or stainless steel lining (but that is not this).
Believe it or not, each of the mugs that Morken Barware manufacture are both handmade and endure a 15 step process to ensure maximum quality (this takes two days).
To avoid both dirt and leaking, the handles have been applied with a weld and not with rivets. Plus, the handles themselves are not brass.
What you receive with your purchase here are two 16-ounce mugs. For the price of admission and quality, that is a pretty good deal.
Though there have been some users who have noted the finish on these does not hold up too well, the overall quality and craftsmanship can’t be denied here. The dedication to the craft is on full display here.
5. Krown Kitchen
Stainless steel does have its advantages
It is truly gorgeous
Sports a double walled construction
It is on the thinner side
Ah, yes, it is time to introduce stainless steel. Now, it is important to note that this is still plated with copper but the double walled construction is lined with stainless steel.Read more
Indeed, unlike the others that have preceded it, this is not made of copper. Instead, it is made of stainless steel and is merely plated in the metal to give it that classic mug appeal. But, some users note it is thinner than expected.
Due to both the stainless steel lining and the double wall construction, ice is going to stay cold for longer periods (for up to at least two hours).
Though some people may not like the addition of stainless steel, it is tough to deny how downright gorgeous this looks. Given its handcrafted nature, that is no surprise.
Krown Kitchen implemented an upgraded handle to their design and with its new ergonomics, it provides an effortless grip when you are drinking your ice cold beverages.
In addition to the actual mug that you receive, you also get a coaster, cleaning cloth, and recipe book with your purchase. Not a bad package deal, all things considered.
In a way, you could consider this the best stainless steel copper mug in the world. That almost seems like a misnomer but indeed, that is the truth.
6. A29 Gift Set
This is an amazing value
Each mug is carefully handcrafted
The exterior is beautiful
A few buyers note the finish begins to tarnish quicker than expected
Oh yeah, this is quite the gift set. This is such an amazing value that it almost made this list by default. Of course, it helps that the included items are all fantastic (for the most part).Read more
Getting away from stainless steel, the set of mugs you are provided with here are 100 percent copper. However, they have also been tested for food safety for your convenience.
There is no interior lining here so for those of you who want to have the coldest drink humanly possible, this is probably a good thing.
Just by glancing at the photos, and not even the real things, you can tell the attention to detail. Due to the handcrafted hammered design, you know you are getting high-quality mugs.
The handles have been welded on to ensure there is no issue of leaking. While they are not the thickest handles out there, they suffice fairly well.
Here is the laundry list of items you receive. You get a set of four 16-ounce cups, four straws that are made of copper, a shot glass, a recipe booklet and a gift box.
The sheer value of this product cannot be matched. Granted the actual cups are not perfect in their design, it is tough to argue when you get so much for your buck.
7. Craft Cocktails
Backed by a 100 percent money-back guarantee
Made of handcrafted stainless steel
It is lined with stainless steel
The handle was not engineered the best
Not only have this next set of four mugs been handcrafted, but they have been handcrafted with stainless steel. While this is not the 100 percent copper makeup that some will want, it is great for the right consumers.Read more
Again, as mentioned, this is crafted with stainless steel and it merely has a copper coating on the outside. So, it is not 100 percent genuine for those curious.
One really nice aspect to the addition of the stainless steel lining is it is a bit more of a sanitary choice as it prevents any metal tasting beverages (and also keeps drinks cold).
As with so many other designs on this list, this has been handcrafted to ensure the most natural beauty possible. The end result is shiny, attractive and possibly a bit feminine, as well.
The positive here is that the handles are brass. Yet, the handles themselves are a little too thin and the thumb rests have not been engineered in the right place.
It is worth noting that you actually receive four, 16-ounce models. Also, Craft Cocktails includes their gift box with your purchase making this perfect as a holiday gift.
What a great deal you get here? Even though the handles on the mugs you receive could have been improved, the overall stainless steel composition is still superb.
8. Chef's Star Set
Has an excellent value
Hammered in India
Has no interior lining
The handles are poorly welded
It is not real copper based on consumer feedback
This is yet another set of four here and these have actually been handmade and hammered in India. While it is not flawless, it certainly is not a cheap copy, by any means.Read more
Here is the deal; several consumers have reported that this set does not appear to be genuine copper. But, the sellers claim it is pure. Either way, you look at it, it still is a solid construction.
If you prefer variations with interior metal lining, then you will be disappointed to know that this is not lined with any additional metal.
To ensure that no two models will be identical, Chef’s Star hand makes and hammers all their mugs in India.
The nice thing is the handles in this set are contoured and made of brass. Yet, one buyer claimed the poor welding led to one of the handles breaking.
Though Chef’s Star does not include any other accessories with your purchase, you do receive four, 18-ounce (a bit larger than normal) cups with your purchase.
Are there some red flags here? Yes, there probably are for some of you. For others, though, you will be content with the design as it still is really good.
9. RV Hammered
Designed with a contoured brass handle
Has an 18-ounce capacity
Comes in a set of four
Some buyers have received damaged items
They may tarnish after washing
In spite of what one of the product description claims, it appears this specific model is not lined with nickel. Oh, also, this is plated and not genuine, so be aware of that.Read more
It seems as though this set is plated with metal and is not genuine. Also, some buyers have reported receiving their cups with noticeable damaging.
Indeed, this specific model does not appear to be lined with nickel (in spite of what one of the product descriptions specifies). Several buyers have claimed no such lining exists.
After washing these a few times, you may notice that the finish begins to tarnish. If you like that rustic look, though, this should be just fine with you.
To make these much easier to hold, they come engineered with contoured brass handles.
The general consensus amongst consumer feedback is that you get what you pay for here. You do receive four, 18-ounce cups, though, which is pretty nice.
Probably the most frustrating aspect of this set is the confusion of what the mugs exactly are. They seem to be fit for those who are not overly concerned with perfection.
10. Final Touch Moscow Mule
It is double walled
Made from 304-grade stainless steel
Does sport a very good finish
The coating tends to flake off
Not the best handle in the world
For certain, this here has its slight flaws and design hiccups. With that said, its 304-grade stainless steel construction and copper finish will still satisfy the average buyer out there.Read more
As just mentioned, this is made of 304-grade stainless steel and is finished to look like an old-school cup for Moscow Mules.
The interior of this is stainless steel. But, it is also double-walled and the advantage here is that your drinks are going to stay cooler for much, much longer.
While certainly far from bad, it is fair to say that the finish could have been crafted with superior results. As some buyers note, it can begin to flake off after a few weeks.
The handle is just kind of here in this case. It is not the best and could be larger and thicker for bigger hands, but it still gets the job done.
You can argue that this is one of the worst values on this list. Then again, the only reason this is true is that you only receive one, 16-ounce cup and nothing else.
Most likely, consumers will be split down the middle with this design. It certainly has its perks but also has its flaws that may be too big to overlook, for some people.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Though most will be comprised of copper, not all will be real and genuine and this is something you need to keep in mind.
For this section, let’s just focus on the exterior as we will be discussing the interior later. In case you are curious, these mugs are also known as Moscow Mule mugs and the primary reason for this is they are perfect for that specific alcoholic beverage. In fact, these are almost made for it and back when the drink was conceived, it was served in cups that were 100 percent copper. So, if you are going for authenticity, then you can go with nothing less than 100 percent of the metal.
But, there are also models out there that are merely coated with the metal. Basically, this process entails plating a layer of the metal on the surface of any item (with that being the mug in this case). Possibly a reason why someone would not want their model to be 100 percent copper is that the metal can corrode, degrade and tarnish over time. Then again, other metals are not exactly foolproof in these areas, either.
For the record, this is alluding to the interior design which is critically important for insulation and flavor purposes.
Now, this is where things can get mightily interesting. You see, these types of mugs are either going to be lined with another metal or they will not have any lining whatsoever. The interesting aspect of it, though, is if an interior lining is necessary. To answer this question is really tough, though, because both ways have its advantages. For example, let’s start with the advantages that no lining has. With an interior that is composed of nothing more than copper, its thermal conductivity will be sensational. When you here buyers allude to the fact that this method produces the coldest drinks, this is why. But, copper can also enhance the taste and the aroma of the drink that is inside (with it being safe to consume, for the most part).
Yet, this is where metal linings are nice. Taking a look at stainless steel and nickel (two of the more common metal linings), stainless steel offers a fabulous look and will protect the mug from the ice. However, this metal is not nearly as efficient a conductor of heat and your drinks will not stay cold for quite as long. Nickel is a little better in this area and will also prevent the copper from being released into your drinks. Oh yeah, no matter which method you go with, look for double wall insulation.
Style and the overall craftsmanship of this product will dictate your love for it, simple.
The last two sections were critically important, sure, but this here can make or break things. The level of meticulousness that manufacturers’ put forth to craft their models is about as vital as it gets. As crazy as it seems, the look of these mugs can be as important a factor as any. These types of cups offer crazy benefits over other types, but their aesthetics also set the mood and the tone for the drinking experience. It is not unusual for the manufacturing process to take a few days to complete. This is especially true if the mugs are handcrafted, which adds to the overall process.
In addition to this, this is a perfect time to talk about a process known as hammering. You may see mugs that are hammered and ponder to yourself, “what does that mean”? In order to ensure an even distribution of heat and air, sheets of copper will be hammered down. This is as time-consuming as it sounds but this enhances the metal’s thermal conductivity and overall performance. It also proves how much some designers care about their craft.
There really is only one feature to keep in mind here and it is the handle (which is vital).
This is pretty much the one and the only feature you really need to look for, to be completely honest. Everything else has been covered; so, it is now time to talk about the handle. As simple as it seems, and this goes for any cup that is engineered with a handle, the design of the handle can be as large a factor as any. Well, for the record, there are a few different engineering methods that can be employed to attach a handle. But, in this case, you will mostly see designers choose welding over rivets.
While some people believe that rivets are more durable than welds, it really just depends on the quality of the weld. Welding is the process of melting two pieces of metal together and with this technology, some designers will do it to avoid potential leaking over time. Outside of the actual process of attaching the handle, it is ideal if the handle is comfortable to hold. So, keep an eye out for handles that are contoured and those that offer great ergonomics. Also, there are even some handles that come engineered in brass for extra class.
You may want additional accessories or even a set of mugs and if you do, keep the overall value in mind.
This is one of those products that typically does not get sold on its own. Now, that is not to say that some sellers will not simply offer you one copper mug. But, generally speaking, most sellers will either offer you a set or even additional accessories with your purchase. The accessories can be simple additions such as recipe books and coasters. They are not mandatory but can add to the overall set.
Now, as for the set, you may want more than one mug. If so, there are sellers out there who will offer their model in sets of two, three, or even four. Although, you also need to be wary of the capacity of each of them. If you plan to make Moscow Mules, you ideally need a capacity of around 16 to 20 ounces. You need enough space to accommodate each ingredient and this is why most mugs will be offered in the 16-ounce variety.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
It almost seems silly to be talking about the materials in this case because are not all of these copper mugs? Well, yes they are but it goes a lot deeper than that. The truth is, not many mugs are 100% copper.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Are they safe to drink if unlined?
Let’s just start off with one of the most controversial aspects of this type of cup. Everyone seems to have an opinion on whether or not unlined copper mugs are safe to drink from. But, let’s take the opinion of a professional named Trisha Andrew (an assistant professor at UMass Amherst). As Andrew points out, there is always a chance that a container of any type of material will dissolve slightly into a liquid that comes in contact with its surface. And, in regard to copper, she notes that it is a little faster, but not fast enough to be a concern.
In fact, she calls the notion of being afraid to drink from the material completely absurd. Heck, in order for there to be any issue with acidic pH levels, she also notes, you would have to allow the mug to sit in straight lime juice for a few hours. In short, yes, they are safe.
q: Can they be used with hot drinks?
If anyone knows how insulation and thermal conductivity work, it is a double-edged sword. In other words, thermal conductivity will keep drinks cold if they are naturally cold and hot if they are naturally hot, to begin with. This becomes an issue when you are consuming hot drinks, however. Let’s take coffee, for example as that is probably the most common hot beverage in the world. Yes, your coffee will be kept nice and hot for a long time in a copper mug. The problem is, the surface will be scorching hot to the touch.
What is going to happen, most likely, is you will end up burning your lips on the surface of the cup. Have you ever rolled down your car window after it has been baking in the sun and tried to rest your arm out? The exterior of the car will be too hot to touch. Now, imagine that being your lips!
q: How do you clean and care for them?
One of the real issues with this metal is that it can be easily tarnished. While we will dive a little deeper into that here in a minute, this means it is essential to regularly clean your copper mug after you use it. Thankfully, this is not that hard of a process. That said, you should absolutely never place yours in the dishwasher. This is enhanced with a metal lining as this could end up chipping it. Instead, opt for a simple hand wash with a non-abrasive sponge and soap and water. You can then allow it to air dry when finished.
q: How do you keep them from tarnishing?
Okay, so saying copper is easily tarnished could have been a bit of an overstatement. However, the real problem is what causes this metal to tarnish can’t be avoided in this case as it is always exposed to beverages. Outside of regularly cleaning your mugs, which was already documented just a short while ago, you need to be storing them in a dry location where they will not be exposed to any moisture.
But, what happens if the tarnishing process has already begun? Well, in this scenario, you can create concentrated lemon juice. You can start with just three cups of lemon juice and one cup of salt. Scrub the exposed area with a sponge and this solution and if no results occur, you can add some ammonia and white vinegar (1/2-cup and one-cup, respectively).
q: What magic is there that keeps your drinks cold?
There really is no magic here, ladies and gentlemen. These mugs do not have an internal electrical cooling component or anything like that. It really comes down to the copper itself (or other linings that can conduct heat well). It is simply the natural way it responds to temperature changes that make it so effective, in this case. As was mentioned earlier, whether this is keeping a drink hot or keeping one cold, it is able to do both because of its sensitivity and its superb thermal conductivity prowess. Why do you think Moscow Mules started with this material, after all?
q: Are they good for beer?
In reality, this question could be entitled, “are these good for any type of beverage”? And, the answer to this question would be yes, but with some exceptions. Clearly, the issue with hot drinks was already discussed so you know they should be avoided. But, for a beverage such as beer, it will keep it ice-cold (if you add ice or it is already ice-cold when you pour it inside). Yet, when the beer comes in contact with the copper (if it is not lined with another metal) the metal will oxidize. So, the flavor of your beer may be a little different (nothing too drastic) than it would be before. For beer, this will not be too much of an issue (for some of you).
What about for other drinks such as pops and even milk? For these, the taste difference may be enough to avoid doing so. But, give it a try and see what it tastes like.