Snake and scorpion wine. Sold in Asia.

There are some things people do in other cultures that we will never in a million years understand. Yes, this is one of those times. Snake wine?

Snake Wine is an alcoholic beverage, make not mistake about it. The wine is made by shoving whole snakes, usually a Cobra, in a bottle of rice wine or grain alcohol. The drink was first recorded to have been consumed in China during the Western Zhou dynasty and according to Chinese tradition, cures many ailments.


It can be found in China, Vietnam and throughout Southeast Asia and many different kinds are made but all usually with deadly venomous snakes.  It is said that the poison is the main ingredient but since it sits in the alcohol, it dilutes the poison and makes it magical and some even use the snakes bile. Mmmmmmm, mmmmmm good!  There are two kinds of this yummy wine:

  • Steeped: A large venomous snake can be placed into a glass jar of rice wine, sometimes with smaller snakes and medicinal herbs and left to steep for many months. The wine is drunk as a restorative in small shots or cups.
  • Mixed: Body fluids of snake are mixed into wine and consumed immediately in the form of a shot. Snake blood wine is prepared by slicing a snake along its belly and draining its blood directly into the drinking vessel filled with rice wine or grain alcohol. Snake bile wine is done through a similar method by using the contents of the gall bladder.

Hey to each their own.  But keep in mind that if not sealed properly, you could get bitten before you even partake of the wine. Snakes can go into some state of dormancy and if they get any kind of air, some survive.  Read this story...the woman who lived to tell about it.