A dram’s a dram for a that – raise a glass to Robbie Burns

Raise your glasses…it’s time to toast the Bard’s birthday. Celebrations will be held all over Scotland – and by ex-pats all over the world – on January 25 in honour of our national poet, Robert Burns.

Robbie was born in 1759 and thanks to work including Auld Lang Syne – a song about friendship which is traditionally sung at new year – he is known all over the world. His life is well documented, as is his love of whisky which features in many of his poems and songs.

So, when celebrating his birth and gifts to the world, it’s got to be with a dram in hand. We also know that Burns was something of a visionary and a little irreverent and, in our opinion, he would have been all for breaking the tradition of drinking whisky with water by mixing up some cocktails.

If you’re lucky enough to be visiting Scotland’s capital on his birthday, there are some excellent whisky bars right on the doorstep of The Chester Residence of which the bard himself would definitely approve.

First stop has to be near neighbours The Angel’s Share. May we suggest Thyme for a BRU? With lemon and thyme infused Monkey Shoulder, lemon juice, sugar and Irn Bru it marries both of Scotland’s national drinks perfectly.

And, if you really can’t stand the thought of anything other than Scotch on the rocks, they have an absolutely huge collection of whisky for you to try. The bar staff really know their stuff when it comes to the amber nectar, so they’ll find you the perfect pour.

The dark and cavernous, yet super-stylish, Usquabae is a basement bar on Hope Street where you’ll find a huge library of Scotch from all of the nation’s whisky-producing regions. Our favourite from the cocktail menu will take you to Islay – famed for the peaty whisky it produces. Their wonderful Whiskitini combines Jura 10 year old with vermouth, atomised peat and bitters.

Visit Amber Restaurant and Bar on the Royal Mile and we promise it will be an education – in all the right ways! The bar is part of the Scotch Whisky Experience and while you’d think they might be all about tradition, their resident mixologist produces some of the finest whisky cocktails in the capital.

Our top tip? The Hebridean Sunset…Scotch whisky, Grand Marnier, Cointreau, lemon juice, orange juice and a dash of grenadine. We never knew that Scotland could be so tropical.

But you don’t have to hit the town to raise a glass to Robbie. If you want to stay in and celebrate from the comfort of our five-star apartments, why not give one of our favourite whisky cocktail recipes a go? You’ll find plenty of glasses in your apartment – and you can even arrange to have the ingredients, along with other groceries, delivered to your door.

Cheers to that!


Dram O’ Shanter

(originally created by Mahiki)


50ml White Mulberry infused Glen Moray Classic Port Cask Finish - 50ml

15ml Drambuie 

15ml Re’al Ginger

25ml lemon juice

10ml port

1 egg white


Put all the ingredients, but the port and dry shake without ice first. Add ice cubes and shake again. Fine strain over cubed ice in rocks glass. Garnish with lemon zest, ginger flakes and white mulberries. Float the port on the top. You can infuse the whisky by adding 150gms of white mulberries to the spirit and leaving it for 24 hours.