Cocktails to toast the immortal memory on Burns Night

Hawksmoor Cocktails

On Monday January 25, Ally Martin will embark on The Voyage of the Black Haggis. As UK brand ambassador for Hendrick’s Gin, he will head off from The Last Word Saloon in his home town of Edinburgh and zig-zag his way down to London via The Maven in Leeds and Epernay in Manchester for a day celebrating Burns Night.

Each city will be treated to an event including a Hendrick’s Haggis. Crafted by Dram & Smoke, this mysterious creation is said to take the humble haggis and add the magic of the botanicals that are used to make the gin in Girvan in south-west Scotland. Ally’s voyage is intended to be a celebration of the unusual, including the traditional ritual of Robert Burns’s “Address to the Haggis” and its resemblance to the rituals behind the gin Martini.

The final event of the day, at Hawksmoor Spitalfields Bar in east London, will feature Hendrick’s Martinis and house punch, haggis dogs and haggis nuggets along with a selection of bespoke Burns Night Hendrick’s cocktails.

Pictured above, the cocktails include the Rusty Fail, a twist on a Rusty Nail, which adds Hendrick’s to the mix of Drambuie and Laphroaig whisky. The Northern Special combines Hendrick’s with sour cherry and hibiscus syrup, manzanilla sherry, lemon juice and Peychaud’s Bitters, topped with floral tonic and garnished with cherries, lemon slices and nutmeg in a twist on an Artist Special.

The Bloody Ampersand – a twist on a classic whisky-based Blood & Sand – mixes the gin with Aperol and Cherry Heering liqueur, topped with champagne. The Howard Flowery is a twist on a classic Penicillin, made with Hendrick’s, rose syrup, ginger syrup, Laphroaig, lemon, a cucumber slice and egg white with a rose petal garnish. A twist on a Heather Cocktail is Heather and Salt, combining gin, pomegranate syrup, Cocchi Rosa and a pinch of salt, served with a lemon zest.

Burns Night has inspired other bartenders to create cocktails, such as the team at The Cocktail Trading Company who are preparing to open a new bar in Brick Lane in east London shortly. They have worked with R&B Distillers to come up with some Burns Night cocktails for the company’s new whiskies, Raasay While We Wait and R&B Borders.

Mac Daddy
25ml Raasay While We Wait
25ml Ginger wine
25ml Golden syrup (diluted 1 to 1)
25ml Lemon juice
Churn over crushed ice and serve in a golden syrup tin. Garnish with a mint sprig and a brandy snap.

Mac Daddy

Spicy Red Head
50ml R&B Borders
75ml Spicy ginger beer
Squeeze of lime
25ml Red wine float
Serve long in a tumbler. Garnish with big sprig of mint and a deep fried bread crumb coated mini bars bar as well as a good dusting of icing sugar.

Smith & Whistle bar at the Sheraton Park Lane Hotel London Mayfair has already begun celebrating, with four days of Scottish hospitality from January 22 to 25. Alongside scotch whiskies, food and beers from Scotland’s Harviestoun Brewery, the bar team have created cocktails with Chivas 12 Year Old whisky, taking inspiration from some of Burns’s well-known works.

Ae Man’s A Man mixes the whisky with Green Chartreuse, Dolin Sweet Vermouth, Briottet Crème d’abricot and Peychaud’s Bitters, while Holly Willie’s Prayer combines the Chivas with Warre’s Port, Gancia vermouth, cherries and egg white. Ae Fond Kiss is a mix of Chivas 12 Year Old, Bicerin Chocolate Liqueur, maple syrup, chilli and espresso.

For those inspired to discover more of what Scotland has to offer, Smith & Whistle is running a prize draw to win a two-night stay for two people, including breakfast, at the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa in Edinburgh at

As part of a Burns Night celebration at B&H Buildings in Clerkenwell, London, the team have created the warm Smoked Heather Dram. It is made with Laphroaig Quarter Cask whisky, Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao, sweet vermouth, apple juice and orange zest. Hand-picked Scottish heather is ignited in the glass infusing the flambéed cocktail with the flavours of the Highlands.

B&H Buildings’ Burns Night supper will also feature a five-course Scottish supper created by executive chef Adam Gray, with the option of pairing their food with a whisky cocktail or whiskies such as Macallan, Highland Park, Laphroaig, Bowmore and Auchentoshan.

The B&H Master of Ceremonies will take charge by reciting the Selkirk Grace. The haggis will be piped in and addressed with the traditional toast to the poet’s immortal memory. There will also be a ticketed Macallan whisky tasting in the venue’s new basement bar, Below & Hidden.

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