A Cocktail with a Bite: The Rattlesnake

In the world of whisky cocktails, a Rattlesnake won’t kill you with its bite. Rather, its ‘poison’ will leave you happily inebriated. The Rattlesnake cocktail is an interesting mix of contrasting flavours—whisky, egg white, syrup and lime—perfectly balancing out each other. There are subtle differences in the drink when it is mixed with different whiskies and syrup. While bourbon and maple syrup makes Rattlesnake a greatly balanced refresher, rye whiskey and simple syrup gives it an extra peppery bite.

To enjoy a Rattlesnake, you don’t need an occasion. Then again, with close friends, this smooth and frothy delight becomes an intoxicating indulgence. Its sweet, sour, herbal, and punchy notes ideally goes well with Italian food. A sumptuous meal with Spaghetti Aglio e Olio and Rattlesnake is definitely recommended. A few drinks down, it is hard not love its heady buzz. Harry Craddock in his ‘The Savoy Cocktail Book’ (1930) aptly quipped that a Rattlesnake cocktail could either cure its bite, kill one, or even make you see one.  

While molecular mixology is grabbing worldwide attention, classical mixers like Rattlesnake are a reminder of how the age-old pantry staples can come together to become a winner.

Mix Your Own Drink

For this recipe, you can try different kinds of whiskies and find the one that suits your taste.

First, chill your cocktail glass in the freezer. In a shaker, pour in 60 ml whisky, 22 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice, 22 ml of egg white, 15 ml syrup, and about 8 ml absinthe (for extra punch). Shake the shaker vigorously for a minute. Add in a few cubes of ice and shake again for another minute. Strain the frothy mixture into the chilled cocktail glass. You can serve as is or garnish it with a dash of Angostura bitters and fangs (for effect), if you have some.

Old Fashioned