The best whiskies to celebrate Burns Night 

Falling dangerously close to an otherwise successful completion of a “dry January”, Burns night, makes for an appropriate occasion to fall off any rickety wagon.

Falling dangerously close to an otherwise successful completion of a “dry January”, Burns night, makes for an appropriate occasion to fall off any rickety wagon. Certainly, the celebrated 18th-century poet Robert “Rabbie” Burns, a hedonist of heroic proportions, would’ve sneered at suggestions his birthday, 25 January, be a tee-total affair.

Burns was a huge fan of whisky, despite eventually turning his hand to tax collection as an excise man, and the spirit subverted plenty of stanzas, with poems devoted to his favourite whisky, his preferred pub, while even lambasting the English for raising whisky duty.

To toast this legend of both liquor and literature, I’ve selected a collection that might have been close to his heart – quite a challenge since so many distilleries emerged after his death, when the English finally relaxed the duty.

As it happens, historians have suggested some of the drams Burns downed were less discerning, while he also sank an irresponsible dose of the stuff. So rather than go like for like, I’ve opted for some tenuous themes and advocate drinking less but better whisky.

Lowlands

In his Jolly Beggar poem Burns mentions a lowland whisky from the Kilbagie distillery, in Kincardine, which by all accounts would’ve been eye-watering gear.

Glenkinchie provides you with a softer, lighter and more balanced lowland, and the Glenkinchie 2016 Special Release is one I’ve been back to a few times.

It shows how a lighter foundation of this style can be reinforced with impressive maturation, still fresh, but sweet and spicy with it.  Glenkinchie 2016 Special Release, £309, Whisky Exchange

Highlands

Legend has it the brilliant bard liked a smooth spirit to accompany the rough element he mixed with in the pubs, and some say he often opted for a refined highland malt.

He would’ve been satisfied with Dalmore then, not least because the distillery is so inventive with expressions.[ . . .  ]

Read Full Story at: The best whiskies to celebrate Burns Night 

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