I knew nothing about snake wine until the above photo—it’s kinda pretty in its weird colorful way, isn’t?—started popping up on my Facebook timeline. I noticed a lot of people were calling shenanigans in the comments, saying the photo was fake. Well, it’s not.
“The drink was first recorded to be used in China during the Western Zhou dynasty (771 BC)” according to Wikipedia.
The snakes, preferably venomous ones, are not usually preserved for their meat but to have their “essence” and snake venom dissolved in the liquor. However, the snake venom is denatured by the ethanol; its proteins are unfolded and therefore inactive.
Snake wine can be found in China, Vietnam and Southeast Asia. If you can’t travel there to get your mitts on this exotic hooch, you can order bottles online at Asian Snake Wine.
More photos after the jump…