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

Tasting Sets for Whisky and Gin

Whisky gift for Father's Day 2019

BUY WHISKY TASTING SET FOR £24.95

Gin gift for Father's Day 2019

BUY GIN TASTING SET FOR £24.95

VIEW OTHER IDEAL WHISKY GIFTS FOR FATHER'S DAY 2019

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

Lagg Distillery, Isle of Arran 2nd Distillery officially opens to the public

Lagg Distillery, Isle of Arran 2nd Distillery officially opens to the public

Lagg Distillery, the second on the Isle of Arran, has officially opened its doors to the general public and is now welcoming visitors to the brand new site. Read more

Talisker bodega series launches talisker 41-year-old. Skye’s oldest distillery: a 1978 Vintage Single Malt Whisky

Talisker unveils the second release from the Bodega series, a 41-year-old aged in Manzanilla sherry casks

Talisker bodega series launches talisker 41-year-old

From August, Talisker will unveil the second release of only 2,000 bottles from the Talisker Bodega Series and the oldest official Single Malt, to date, from Skye’s oldest distillery: a 41-year-old 1978 Vintage.. Read more

Glen Scotia Distillery’s push reaches UK parliament to position Campbeltown as the "whiskiest place in the world"

Glen Scotia Distillery's push reaches UK parliament to position Campbeltown as the whiskiest place in the world

Glen Scotia Distillery’s push to position Campbeltown as the “whiskiest place in the world” has made it all the way to Westminster, where the campaign has been recognised by a parliamentary motion. Read more

Distell digitally launches 2019 limited release malt collection: Malts from Bunnahabhain, Tobermory and Deanston Distilleries

Distell digitally launches 2019 limited release malt collection: Malts from Bunnahabhain, Tobermory and Deanston Distilleries

Award-winning whisky producer, Distell has chosen a modern and progressive route to unveiling its 2019 Limited Release Collection, reaching influencers and whisky lovers old and new solely through film and social media.  Read more

Jura Single Malt Scotch Whisky announces rare opportunity to join tiny island distillery off the West Coast of Scotland

Jura Single Malt Scotch Whisky announces rare opportunity to join tiny island distillery off the West Coast of Scotland

Applications are open to become the Brand Home Manager at the popular Single Malt Whisky Distillery. Jura are seeking applicants to join the distillery team which sits at the heart of the tiny island community, with current population at c.212 people. Read More

Eden Mill Unveil £3.1m New Distillery Plans for new Production facilities in St Andrews, Fife.

Eden Mill Unveil £3.1m New Distillery Plans for new Production facilities in St Andrews, Fife.

Eden Mill, the award-winning Scottish gin and whisky distiller, has submitted a planning application for a major £3.1m development of new production facilities in St Andrews, Fife, which is part of a longer term £8m investment programme. Read more

Mackmyra Svensk Whisky turns 20, Sweden's first ever single malt whisky distillery

Mackmyra Svensk Whisky turns 20, Sweden's first ever single malt whisky distillery

Mackmyra is turning 20 this year, both as a company and Sweden’s first ever single malt whisky distillery. Under the tagline “The Swedish Original since 1999”, our vision to be at the cutting edge and produce world-class, innovative and eco-friendly malt whisky is the same today as it was when we started. After 20 years of hard work, we now enjoy a well-deserved position as a leading distillery in the New World Whisky category. Read more

Glenfiddich Elevates Flagship Range With Sophisticated Redesign for 12 and 15 year old bottles.

World’s Most Awarded Single Malt Scotch Whisky takes signature 12 and 15 Year Old expressions to the next level

Glenfiddich Elevates Flagship Range With Sophisticated Redesign for 12 and 15 year old bottles.

18th June 2019, Dufftown: Glenfiddich, the World’s Most Awarded Single Malt Scotch Whisky, pays homage to its origins in the Valley of the Deer with a striking new package design for its 12 and 15 Year Old iconic whiskies. The new packaging will be rolled out in the UK and US to begin with from 18th June 2019, with Small Batch 18 Year Old following suit in 2020. Read more

Planning permission approved for Clynelish Distillery New Look visitor experience by Highland Council

Planning permission approved for Clynelish Distillery New Look visitor experience by Highland Council

A key milestone has been reached in the journey to transform the Clynelish Distillery visitor experience after Highland Council formally granted planning permission for the development today (Monday 17th June 2019). 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

Lochside 1981 (bottled 2015) (Lot No. RO/15/07) - Rare Old (Gordon & M Single Malt Whisky
Lochside 1981 (bottled 2015) (Lot No. RO/15/07) - Rare Old (Gordon & M Single Malt Whisky ~ 46% ~ 70cl

Region: Highland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £695.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Macallan 25 Year Old 1993 - North Star Spirits Single Malt Whisky
Macallan 25 Year Old 1993 - North Star Spirits Single Malt Whisky ~ 49.2% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £1,595.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Millburn 25 Year Old 1975 - Rare Malts Single Malt Whisky
Millburn 25 Year Old 1975 - Rare Malts Single Malt Whisky ~ 62% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £750.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glengoyne 30 Year Old Single Malt Whisky
Glengoyne 30 Year Old Single Malt Whisky ~ 46.8% ~ 70cl

Region: Highland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £639.90
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Ladyburn 40 Year Old 1974 (cask 74) - Private Cask Collection (William Single Malt Whisky
Ladyburn 40 Year Old 1974 (cask 74) - Private Cask Collection (William Single Malt Whisky ~ 48.6% ~ 70cl

Region: Lowland  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £2,400.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Laphroaig 25 Year Old Cask Strength (2017 Release) (without Presentati Single Malt Whisky
Laphroaig 25 Year Old Cask Strength (2017 Release) (without Presentati Single Malt Whisky ~ 48.9% ~ 70cl

Region: Islay  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £415.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenfiddich 25 Year Old - Rare Oak Single Malt Whisky
Glenfiddich 25 Year Old - Rare Oak Single Malt Whisky ~ 43% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £350.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenfarclas 1954 (cask 1260) Family Cask Summer 2014 Release Single Malt Whisky
Glenfarclas 1954 (cask 1260) Family Cask Summer 2014 Release Single Malt Whisky ~ 47.2% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £6,789.23
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenfarclas 1980 (cask 1413) Family Cask Summer 2018 Release Single Malt Whisky
Glenfarclas 1980 (cask 1413) Family Cask Summer 2018 Release Single Malt Whisky ~ 47.8% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £501.00
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Glenfarclas 1955 (cask 2217) Family Cask Autumn 2013 Release Single Malt Whisky
Glenfarclas 1955 (cask 2217) Family Cask Autumn 2013 Release Single Malt Whisky ~ 43.3% ~ 70cl

Region: Speyside  ~  Type:   Scottish


Buy Now for £8,283.41
World-wide delivery available - Price Subject to Change


Planet Whiskies on Pinterest

Planet Whiskies on Twitter