Planet Whiskies :: Scottish Single Malt Whisky, Scotch, Distilleries, American Bourbon, Japanese, Irish

World-Wide Whisky News by Planet Whiskies | Buy your whisky online

To advertise on Planet Whiskies visit our contact us page

A contemporary Burns Night: Hosting a modern take on the traditional celebration by Arran Whisky

Arran Whisky :: A contemporary Burns Night: Hosting a modern take on the traditional celebration by Arran Whisky

With Christmas a distant memory and spring a long way away, the end of January isn’t a traditionally cheerful time unless you follow Scottish tradition and throw a party to rival Hogmanay on the 25th. Burns Night is a celebration of the great Robert Burns, national hero and Scotland’s most beloved poet, and a great excuse to shake off the winter blues.

James McTaggart, Master Distiller at Isle of Arran Distillers who produce the world’s only official Robert Burns Malt, is well versed in how to throw a brilliant Burns Night celebration. Here he shares his top tips on how to welcome newcomers and make the evening an inclusive and modern affair:

1.Set the tone

“Are you going to strictly adhere to traditions? Will your guests appreciate traditional pipe music? Do you want a dress code? Before deciding on anything, work out what sort of evening you want.

“While there are many who believe there’s only one proper way to celebrate Burns Night, the most important thing is to have a good time. If a playlist of contemporary Scottish music is more appropriate to the atmosphere there’s certainly plenty to choose from!

2. Pick your traditions:

“Contrary to what many people may believe, Burns Night is traditionally a very structured affair. There are set times for welcome addresses, toasts, food and entertainment. If you’re not Scottish, or familiar with these traditions, it can be an intimidating itinerary.

“Instead, select activities that will suit your party and the preferences of your guests. Poetry is naturally considered very important though, so if there are any brave guests, encourage them to get up and recite some of Burns’ work. ‘My Love is a Red, Red Rose’ and ‘Ae Fond Kiss’ are firm favourites. Or, as host, take command of the Selkirk Grace as you serve dinner in a nod to the man who has inspired hundreds of years’ worth of parties.

The Selkirk Grace
Some Folk hae meat that canna eat,
And some can eat that want it;
But we hae meat, and we can eat,
So let the Lord be Thanket!
“Of course, no Burns Night is complete without a rousing rendition of Auld Lang’s Syne, helped by an evening of whisky, which everyone should be familiar with.”

3. Lay the table:

“Food should be absolutely central to the party. The star of the show is normally a haggis which, in a traditional sit-down dinner, is piped in by bagpipes, toasted with a dram of whisky and pierced with a dagger before being eaten.”

“For a more modern take on proceedings, create a Scottish tapas menu. Serve a guests a trio of small servings that include all the Burns night favourites such as neeps and tatties (swede and potato), haggis with a drizzle of whisky sauce and cock-a-leekie soup.

“Or, make the meal a simple celebration of Scottish produce with a sit down meal of salmon fishcakes, venison and local cheeses served with oat cakes followed by shortbread and coffee.”

4. Know your whisky

“Burns Night wouldn’t be complete without whisky and no table is set without a good selection of drams. Whisky has become very fashionable once again so you may find many of your guests will be more than happy to try something new.

“Add a modern twist by serving a flute of different varieties ranging from strong, peaty Scotch to those with lighter palates. Or, pick a distillery and present a variety of ages. Our core range, for example, offers slightly different taste profiles from the lighter, more citrus 10yo to the richer, fruity 14yo with a touch of spice.

“Whisky cocktails are increasingly popular and offer an alternative to a neat serving for those less familiar with a dram. Pick a softer whisky for mixing to give you the option of a varied menu. We developed a number of recipes with Robert Burns Single Malt, the only whisky endorsed by the Robert Burns World Federation, for this very reason.”

5. Make Merry

“At the core of any Burns Night is the entertainment. The most popular is probably the famous Toast to the Lassies and Reply to the Toast to the Lassies. Usually incorporating quotes from Burns, these are comical monologues, light hearted and positive (with the odd sharp observation). 

“Introduce a modern version of this to your night with men vs women games and competitions. The whole point of Burns Night to have an amazing time so fun should be at the heart of all your preparations.”

Isle of Arran Distillers produce the world’s only official Robert Burns Malt, it is available from specialist whisky retailers and online at www.arranwhisky.com for £29.99 RRP. The distillery is a Patron of the Robert Burns World Foundation.

 

Planet Whiskies on Twitter
Planet Whiskies on Facebook
Planet Whiskies on Pinterest

Subscribe to Planet Whiskies newsletter

* indicates required


Loch Fyne Whiskies

Loch Fyne Whiskies

Have you seen all the whisky specials on offer at Loch Fyne Whiskies in Inveraray? All orders placed have next day delivery. Click to discover all these fantastic offers... Read More

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

View latest whisky news

Seductive Silkie Irish Whiskey Launches in the UK. The award-winning and legendary Silkie blended Irish whiskey

Seductive Silkie Irish Whiskey Launches in the UK. The award-winning and legendary Silkie blended Irish whiskey

 

 Fresh from widespread acclaim in its homeland, the award-winning and legendary Silkie blended Irish whiskey is now available to UK drinkers. Named after the mythical seals that transform into irresistible maidens when ashore Donegal’s beaches, the whiskey is as smooth as its name suggests. Read more

Ardbeg Day celebrates a taste of the Caribbean with Rum-bustious Revelry in honour of Ardbeg Day Bottling, Ardbeg Drum

Join the UK festivities at Regent’s Park, London, for Ardbeg’s ‘Drum Roll Please…’
 Saturday 1st June 2019

Ardbeg Day celebrates a taste of the Caribbean with Rum-bustious Revelry in honour of Ardbeg Day Bottling, Ardbeg Drum

As Ardbeg Day fast approaches, Islay’s peatiest single malt has revealed how this annual whisky celebration will take shape in London, for those wanting to share in the rum-bustious revelry away from its native Islay shores. Read more

The Balvenie launches a unique new ‘stories’ range, three tales of character written in whisky

The Balvenie launches a unique new ‘stories’ range, three tales of character written in whisky

 On the 21st May The Balvenie announces the launch of its new Stories range – a unique collection of three single malt whiskies representing tales of character, endeavour and craft, created at its home in Dufftown, Scotland. Read more

Exclusive Interview with Paul McDonagh owner of Bon Accord: Glasgow Whisky Bar

Paul McDonagh owner of Bon Accord

It’s a pub that I have been into many times in the past, even before my passion for whisky took over. So, when I got the opportunity to meet the owner of “Bon Accord”, Paul McDonagh, I jumped at the chance. Read more

Great Whiskies Website

Buy Whisky online go to Great Whiskies (Planet Whiskies sister website)

Planet Gin Website

To read all the Latest Gin News. please go to our sister website - www.planetgin.com

VisitScotland Interactive Whisky Guide

Visit Scotland Interactive Whisky Map

Found out about 105 whisky distilleries in Scotland's five whisky regions in this very exciting interactive whisky guide :: More information

Some Scottish Whisky Available to Buy Online

Kavalan Solist Amontillado Cask (55.6%) Single Malt Whisky
Kavalan Solist Amontillado Cask (55.6%) Single Malt Whisky ~ 55.6% ~ 70cl

Region: Taiwanese  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £360.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenfarclas 1986 (cask 3447) Family Cask Spring 2017 Release Single Malt Whisky
Glenfarclas 1986 (cask 3447) Family Cask Spring 2017 Release Single Malt Whisky ~ 52.8% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £503.75
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


The Macallan 18 Year Old 1978 Single Malt Whisky
The Macallan 18 Year Old 1978 Single Malt Whisky ~ 43% ~ 75cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £2,495.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenfiddich 39 Year Old 1977 (cask 22742) - Rare Collection Single Malt Whisky
Glenfiddich 39 Year Old 1977 (cask 22742) - Rare Collection Single Malt Whisky ~ 44.9% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £2,500.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Laphroaig 28 Year Old Single Malt Whisky
Laphroaig 28 Year Old Single Malt Whisky ~ 44.4% ~ 70cl

Region: Islay  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £475.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


The Macallan 10 Year Old 100 Proof (Red Sticker) - 1980s Single Malt Whisky
The Macallan 10 Year Old 100 Proof (Red Sticker) - 1980s Single Malt Whisky ~ 57% ~ 75cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £1,500.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenlochy 25 Year Old 1980 (cask 2827) - Cask Strength Collection (Sig Single Malt Whisky
Glenlochy 25 Year Old 1980 (cask 2827) - Cask Strength Collection (Sig Single Malt Whisky ~ 55.3% ~ 70cl

Region: Highland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £399.95
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Littlemill 20 Year Old - Royal Wedding Celebration (Hart Brothers) Single Malt Whisky
Littlemill 20 Year Old - Royal Wedding Celebration (Hart Brothers) Single Malt Whisky ~ 46% ~ 70cl

Region: Lowland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £325.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenglassaugh 38 Year Old 1978 (cask 2343) - Rare Cask Release Batch 3 Single Malt Whisky
Glenglassaugh 38 Year Old 1978 (cask 2343) - Rare Cask Release Batch 3 Single Malt Whisky ~ 42.5% ~ 70cl

Region: Highland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £1,150.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glen Ord 23 Year Old 1974 - Rare Malts Single Malt Whisky
Glen Ord 23 Year Old 1974 - Rare Malts Single Malt Whisky ~ 60.8% ~ 70cl

Region: Highland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £395.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Planet Whiskies on Pinterest

Planet Whiskies on Twitter