Top Whisky Picks for Burns Night

Next Thursday, 25th January is Burn’s Night, so we spoke to our friends from Smith & Wollensky about some of the whisky you might want to celebrate with.
Head Bartender, Ernest Reid has picked four fantastic whiskies to match all budget levels and get you in the mood…

Under £50 | Compass Box: Asyla – £38.95 

For under £50, a great dram for an entry level drinker who is unsure about spending lots of cash but still looking for a crowd pleaser, the boutique blended whisky from Compass Box called Asyla will sit comfortably on most Burns Night dinner tables. It’s a no age statement whisky but it’s a blend of single malts and grain whisky. At the front of the palate, it has a lovely combination of fresh fruits: apples! Pears! Even honeydew melon! Balanced out on the finish with nutmeg, black pepper and with a hint of porridge oats. It also versatile enough to be usable in cocktails and hot toddies for those not quite brave enough yet to drink neat.

Around £70 | Springbank 15 year – £66.95

I have always described the Springbank distillery as the Toy R Us of distilleries, they do everything under one roof, from malting local barley to bottling it on site. Springbank for me is a call back to the flavour profile of old… It has a perfect balance of malty sweetness, citrus sourness with a whiff of smoke… In terms of flavour with the 15-year-old; it has a rounded raw chocolate finish, with sherry raisin notes right at the front and a fair amount of smoke throughout so if you’re not a fan of the smokey stuff probably not your cup of tea.

Over £100 | Glenmorangie Signet – £135

I buy at least one of these a year and it’s always worth every penny, the Signet was the first scotch to my knowledge to use heavily roasted barley normally reserved for stout beer in their mash bill. The use of this specially processed malt gives it amazing tasting notes rarely found in normal expressions of Glenmorangie, a combination of chocolate, coffee and orange, with an incredible smooth and silky mouthfeel. Need a gift for your Scottish boss? This is the one to get in his good books!  

Balvenie Portwood 21 year – £136

For those looking to splash a bit of sterling over Burns Balvenie Portwood 21 year is one of my favs. The whisky spends around 20 years or more in ex-bourbon barrels giving it a vanilla, exotic fruits and spice notes which would be delicious to begin with but then they finish for around a year or so in a 30-year-old port pipe transforming it in to an incredible dessert style dram, oaky, nutty, fruity and complex with an unusually creamy texture. The nose alone is worth the price and even your most adamant whisky avoider will be asking for a second dram!     

Burn’s Night menu at Smith & Wollensky

In addition, to celebrate Burn’s Night this year, Smith & Wollensky have created a special menu that revels in all things Scottish with their American twist…

Executive Chef, Tom Cook has created a three-course menu in collaboration with Nake Grouse whisky that will be served 24-26 January inclusive and will be priced at £55 per person.

Guest will start the meal the traditional way with a noggin of Naked Grouse whisky followed by arguably the most renowned Macsween with neeps and tatties & a red wine jus.

This will be followed by a 225g Scottish fillet of beef and accompanied by pan roasted wild mushrooms, creamed spinach and french fries.  The meal will be rounded off by the traditional Scottish dessert of Cranachan. 

We hope all our readers have a great Burns Night, why not drop us a line on social @cutthecap or in the comments below and let us know what you have planned…

Did you know? Haggis is still banned for import in the USA!