Burns Night falls on January 25th and if you are looking for some delicious food and drinks pairings to raise a toast to Scottish legend Robert Burns, we have you covered. Whether it’s dining out, cocktails at home or tasty treats you’ll find some inspiration below. Visit our foodies column for more!
There is no better way to shake off the January blues than by celebrating Burns Night on the 25th January 2020. Observe this historic event and raise a glass to Robert Burns with the classic Bobby Burns cocktail, which has been given an unexpected ‘Rare’ twist by world-renowned Jason Scott, owner of Bramble Bar and the iconic blended Scotch whisky, J&B Rare.
The J&B Rare ‘Bobby Burns’ Cocktail
This year why not take a twist on the traditional and make J&B Rare Scotch whisky part of your celebrations. Created in the 1930’s (at the very same time the first known printed recipe of the Bobby Burns appeared in Harry Craddock’s The Savoy Cocktail Book), J&B Rare has a light flavour profile, which makes it the perfect canvas for whisky cocktails such as The Bobby Burns.
Craddock’s original recipe called for Italian Vermouth and Scotch Whisky with 3 dashes of bitters, Jason Scott’s twist on the traditional combines J&B Rare with Balthazar Vermouth, Benedictine and Peychaud bitters, creating a subtle yet complex Bobby Burns.
Now in its 219th year, Burns Night is a true celebration of friends, food and whisky. What better way to mark the occasion than with Jason’s instant classic. To make the J&B Rare Bobby Burns simply: Add ice to a cocktail shaker. Pour in 50ml J&B Rare, 25ml Balthazar Vermouth, 5ml Benedictine and 2 dashes of Peychaud Bitters. Stir and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a fresh lemon peel twist.
J&B Rare has been distilled, blended and bottled in Scotland since the 1930’s and is a blend of 42 malt and grain whiskies. The heart of J&B Rare is formed from the finest Speyside malts including Knockando, Glen Spey, Auchriosk and Strathmill. The blend is returned to the cask for a further three years’ maturation which brings together the bold flavours of the single malts with the lighter grain whiskies adding fullness and depth to the blend. Ask for a J&B Rare Bobby Burns at The Beaumont Hotel in Mayfair. RRP: £22.50 ABV: 40% Available to purchase from: Waitrose, thewhiskyexchange.com masterofmalt.com and Justerini & Brooks.
Celebrate Burns Night With Copper Dog
No Burns Night celebrations would be complete without a dram, or a few, and Copper Dog is the perfect drink to toast the life of Scottish legend Robert Burns. Whether you’re out with the lads and lassies on a Burns night blowout or enjoying a haggis dinner in, this eight malt whisky and celebrity favourite, is the perfect drink to wet your whistle. With hints of peach, apple and orange peel, perfectly complemented by notes of honey and spice (and everything nice), Copper Dog will have you Ceilidh dancing to bagpipes in no time.
To top it off, if you don’t want to face the January cold to get your Burns Night tipple, just order online and have it delivered straight to your door. Let the Burns celebrations begin! Available to purchase: GET IT INKD – £35, 70cl bottle (with an optional personalised message)
An alternative whisky from England – Cotswolds Single Malt Whisky
When raising a glass to toast Scotland’s national poet Robert Burns, on the 25th January 2020, why not be alternative and drink a dram from a distillery in England? Award-winning Cotswolds Single Malt Whisky would be a great choice.
Launched in October 2017, Cotswolds Single Malt Whisky is the first whisky ever distilled in the Cotswolds. The distillery uses 100% locally grown, floor-malted barley and matures the whisky in first-fill ex-Bourbon barrels and reconditioned red wine casks. The whisky is rich, fruity and sippable with notes of honey, Seville orange marmalade and dark red fruits. Each bottle lists the barley variety, harvest year and local Cotswolds farm it was grown on.
Cotswolds Single Malt Whisky recently won a Gold at the World Whiskies Awards 2019, a Gold at the International Wine and Spirit Competition 2019 and took 2 stars (one of only two whiskies to do so) in the 2019 Great Taste Awards.
The distillery’s cask strength whisky release, Founder’s Choice Single Malt Whisky, was recently awarded the title of Best English Single Malt at the World Whiskies Awards 2019, a Double Gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2019 and a Gold at the International Wine and Spirit Competition 2019.
Burns Night Cheese and Snacks from Paxton & Whitfield
Paxton & Whitfield, the UK’s oldest cheesemonger, has curated a Burns Night Cheese Selection (£32.00) that contains three delicious, artisan Scottish cheeses with fine food accompaniments to celebrate Burns Night on Saturday 25th January. The cheeses come from different geographical areas of Scotland and are made by dedicated, award-winning cheesemakers. Savouring these cheeses, that form a tempting ready-made cheeseboard, to honour the life and poetry of Robert Burns is very fitting as Burns’ mother was a cheesemaker in Ayrshire.
The pack is available online at paxtonandwhitfield.co.uk and all the items in the pack are available from Paxton & Whitfield’s four shops in Jermyn Street – Piccadilly, Cale Street – Chelsea Green, Bath and Stratford-upon-Avon.
Burns Night Cheese Selection includes:
- Connage Reserve Gouda (250g) (Pasteurised, vegetarian rennet) – Connage Highland Dairy is located on a family-run farm in Ardersier, Inverness. The farm was started by Hamish Clark and today the farm and dairy are run by his two sons, Callum and Cameron, with the help of their wives. They have an organic dairy herd of 140 cows that are mainly Holstein Friesian with some Jersey crosses and Norwegian Reds. The cows graze on clover pastures that surround the dairy and along the shores of the Moray Firth. The cattle from the farm produce the milk that makes this cheese. This Gouda is a waxed cheese that ranges from sweet and milk when young, to a firmer texture and stronger flavour when matured.
- Clava Brie (250g)(Pasteurised, vegetarian rennet) – This is a soft, brie-style cheese made at Connage Highland Dairy. To achieve the best results for the cheese the curds are delicately hand-ladled into their moulds. The cheeses then develop a soft white rind which helps soften the interior during maturation. The cheese has a delightful earthy and mushroomy flavour. It won a Gold at the 2018 International Cheese Show Nantwich.
- Lanark Blue (250g) (Unpasteurised, vegetarian rennet) – Lanark Blue is made by Errington Cheese in Carnwath, South Lanarkshire. The family-run farm and dairy were set up by Humphrey Errington in the early 1980s. Today the raw ewes’ milk used to make Lanark Blue comes from the farm’s flock of Lacaune ewes. A Scottish equivalent to French Roquefort, the cheese is matured in cool and moist traditional stone buildings for up to 8 months. It has a sharp, clean blue flavour that is best complemented with sweet accompaniments such as Monbazillac or honey.
- Original Oaties (150g) – These golden, open textured oaties have a delicious nutty taste. Handmade with locally sourced rolled oats from County Armagh they are perfect for these three cheeses.
- Spiced Plum Chutney (198g) – A sweet and lightly spiced plum chutney with plump raisins and apples to create the perfect chutney for cheese.
Traditional Burns Night Supper with Talisker
If you’re a fan of tradition, head down to London’s leading game restaurant, The Jugged Hare, this January for its Traditional Burns Night Supper and Fine Wine Evening, in association with Talisker Whisky. Hosted on Saturday 25th January in the venue’s private Josephine Room, the gastronomical celebration is a must for those looking to mark the Scottish holiday in the capital.
The evening will feature a five-course menu devised by The Jugged Hare’s Head Chef, perfectly paired with fine wines selected by ETM Group’s Sommelier, as well as the opportunity to watch a traditional bagpiper address the haggis.
With this year’s event run in partnership with one of Scotland’s finest whisky brands, Talisker Whisky, guests will be greeted with a delicious welcome whisky cocktail, as well as feast on whisky paired food. Hosted in memory of the great Scottish poet, Robert Burns, guests will finish the dinner by raising a dram of Talisker to the great man himself.
Tickets are priced at £85 per person and are available for purchase online here.