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Scotch Guide: Burns Night

Irish whiskey drinkers have St. Patrick’s Day and bourbon drinkers have the Kentucky Derby, but what do Scotch drinkers have? Burns Night. The holiday, which is tonight, celebrates the birth of Scotland’s national poet, Robert Burns, back in 1759. Honor the man by trying one of these new single malts.

Auchentoshan Valinch 2012 Limited Edition ($60):

Burns was born not that far from Glasglow and would have appreciated this whisky made outside the city. Thanks to a third distillation, Auchentoshan is unusually smooth and quaffable, and the silky Valinch 2012 is no exception.

The Arran Malt 12 Years Old, Cask Strength ($70):

From the tiny Isle of Arran off the southwest coast of Scotland comes this recently released 12-year-old. It’s a potent 107.2-proof with plenty of black pepper and some anise on the palate. Add a bit of water or a few ice cubes, and it will open up.

Dalwhinnie 25 Year Old 1898 ($289):

In America, you can usually buy only two types of Dalwhinnie, but the brand just introduced a very special 25-year-old limited-edition cask-strength bottling as well. It has both spicy and sweet fruity notes with an elegant finish.

Glen Garioch Limited Edition 1986 Vintage ($250):

Toast the poet with a truly unique dram of Glen Garioch (pictured above). It was produced in 1986, when the distillery still floor-malted and peated its barley, and the spirit matured for 25 years in American oak barrels. As a result, there are hints of smoke and spice.

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