These caramels must be wrapped or they will lose their shape over time at room temperature. Use waxed paper cut into 5×5-inch squares for wrapping. Have the wrappers cut and ready before you remove the caramel from the pan. For a non-alcoholic version use ginger beer with no alcohol added and omit the vodka.
Butter an 8×8 inch pan and line with parchment paper that over hangs the edges. Combine the remaining ginger beer and the next 5 ingredients in a heavy 4-5 quart pot. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally. The beer will fizz and bubble to the top of the pot when heated, so watch it carefully and stir so the bubbling subsides. Butter will melt and mixture will begin to boil.
Continue to cook until candy thermometer reaches 244°F, this will take about 30 minutes. You can test your caramel in a bowl of ice water to check the consistency. It should form a firm ball.
When the correct temperature has been reached, stir in the ginger beer reduction and remove from heat. The ginger beer reduction may firm as it stands because of the sugar content. If it is too firm to pour into the caramel, place it over heat until it loosens and then add it to the pot. Stir in the lime zest. Combine the lime juice and vodka in a small cup; add to the caramel. The mixture will bubble and sputter with this addition (be careful!). Stir in the salt and ground ginger.
Pour into prepared pan. Let cool for several hours or place in fridge until firm. Remove caramel block from pan using the overhanging parchment. Mix together the topping ingredients and sprinkle over the caramel block (you may not have to use all of the topping – add to taste). Cut into 1-inch pieces and wrap in waxed paper squares. Store the wrapped caramels in an airtight container for up to a week, or in the refrigerator for a few days longer.