Snakebite Cocktail Recipe

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Snakebite Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Snakebite cocktail is believed to have originated in the United Kingdom in the late 20th century. It gained popularity among college students and pub-goers due to its simple recipe and refreshing taste. The drink is often associated with punk rock culture and is a favorite among alternative music fans.

  • Origin: United Kingdom
  • Popular among college students and pub-goers
  • Associated with punk rock culture

How Snakebite Tastes?

The Snakebite cocktail has a crisp, refreshing taste with a perfect balance of sweet and tart flavors. The combination of lager and cider gives it a light, fruity undertone, while the blackcurrant liqueur adds a touch of sweetness and a vibrant color.

Interesting facts about Snakebite

  • The Snakebite is sometimes referred to as a 'diesel' or 'purple nasty'
  • In some pubs in the UK, it is rumored to be banned due to its potency and the rowdy behavior it can induce
  • The cocktail has a variation called the 'Snakebite and Black' which includes blackcurrant cordial



Lager brings a smooth, clean taste to the mix, often with subtle hops and malt flavors that provide a beer-y backbone to the drink. It's used in 1 part because if you go overboard, you might overpower the gentle interplay with the cider. Think of it as the steady bass in your favorite song—it’s all about balance. If you sub it with an ale, expect a bolder, more pronounced beer character.

Emma Rose


Cider offers a sweet, sometimes tart counterpoint to the lager. It’s like the main vocalist in your drink ensemble—without it, you’d definitely miss the melody. The equal part cider ensures that its apple tones harmonize rather than dominate. A pear cider could be an interesting twist, lending a different fruity vibe.

Alex Green

Blackcurrant Liqueur

The splash of blackcurrant liqueur is like the high note that surprises and delights. Not too much, or it'll steal the show; just enough to give a berry complexity and a gorgeous color. Skipping it leaves you with a simple shandy, but the point of a Snakebite is that cheeky hint of fruit. Crème de cassis could be a similar alternative with a slightly more refined flavor profile.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Snakebite Drink

  1. Fill a pint glass halfway with lager
  2. Fill the remaining half with cider
  3. Add a splash of blackcurrant liqueur
  4. Stir gently to combine

Pro Tips

  • Lager: Choose a lager that is light and crisp for the best flavor combination.
  • Cider: A dry cider is recommended to balance the sweetness of the blackcurrant liqueur.
  • Stirring: Stir gently to avoid losing the carbonation of the lager and cider.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Classic Pub Grub: The mix of lager and cider with a fruity note works well with traditional pub fare. Think fish and chips or a hearty pie—foods that would benefit from the effervescence of the cocktail.
  • Barbecue: The sweet and tangy elements of barbecued meat can complement the fruity, refreshing aspects of a Snakebite.
  • Cheese Platter: A platter featuring a variety of cheeses, especially sharp ones like cheddar, can create an interesting interplay with the sweetness of the blackcurrant liqueur.

Drink Pairings

  • Water: A glass of water is always recommended to help pace your drinking and stay hydrated.
  • Crisp White Wine: For guests who might not be into ciders or lager, a crisp white wine can share a similar refreshing quality.

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What you could change in Snakebite

  • Lager: Can be substituted with a light beer or pilsner.
  • Cider: Can be substituted with apple juice for a non-alcoholic version.
  • Blackcurrant liqueur: Can be substituted with blackcurrant juice or cordial.

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And of course - twists🍹

Cider Snakebite Twist


  • Lager: 1 part
  • Pear Cider: 1 part
  • Blackberry Liqueur: 1 splash Recipe: Follow the original Snakebite recipe but substitute apple cider with pear cider and blackcurrant liqueur with blackberry liqueur. The taste will have a slightly more exotic, berry-infused character and the pear will offer a fresh, autumnal note.

Hopped Snakebite


  • IPA: 1 part
  • Cider: 1 part
  • Raspberry Liqueur: 1 splash Recipe: Use an India Pale Ale (IPA) instead of lager for a hoppier, more bitter edge. The raspberry liqueur adds a tart twist. This would appeal to beer aficionados looking for a vibrant, punchy drink.

Winter Warmer Snakebite


  • Lager: 1 part
  • Spiced Cider: 1 part
  • Cassis: 1 splash Recipe: Opt for a spiced cider with notes of cinnamon and clove to give the Snakebite a wintry feel. The cassis will bring depth and richness—perfect for a chilly evening.

In case you forgot basics how to make Snakebite

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

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Frequently Asked Questions on Snakebite

What is the best type of glass to serve the Snakebite cocktail in?

The best type of glass to serve the Snakebite cocktail in is a pint glass. This allows for the perfect ratio of lager and cider.

What is the origin of the term 'Snakebite' for this cocktail?

The term 'Snakebite' is derived from the strong kick that this drink can provide, much like the bite of a snake.

What are the effects of the alcohol in the Snakebite Cocktail?

The alcohol content in the Snakebite cocktail combined with its easy drinking nature can lead the drinker to become intoxicated more quickly than they might realize.

Can I make a non-alcoholic version of this cocktail?

Yes, you can make a non-alcoholic version of this cocktail by substituting the lager with a non-alcoholic beer and the cider with apple juice.

What are some food pairings that go well with the Snakebite cocktail?

The Snakebite cocktail pairs well with salty and fatty foods such as charcuterie, cheese, or fried snacks.

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