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Arran - The Robert Burns Single Malt

"a true drop of liquid poetry and the perfect dram with which to toast the bard”

All across Scotland and the rest of the world on the 25th January, or around this date, you might attend a Burns Supper to mark the anniversary of The National Bard Robert Burns's birth. Unfortunately this year the best we can do is enjoy some haggis, neeps and tatties from the comfort of our own homes. Held in high importance at a Burns Supper, along with the Selkirk Grace, piping and addressing the haggis, a few recitals and a Toast to the Lassies, is a right good dram to be enjoyed with friends and family, old and new.

Given there are no such celebrations this year, I thought it would be good to get a hold of a bottle of The Robert Burns Single Malt to be enjoyed at my own Burns Supper and put a review on the site. A surprisingly good and complex dram, at incredible value for money, which from now on I will be sure to always have a bottle at hand.

First, some information about the distillery and bottle.

Not only is the Isle of Arran Distillers one of the few remaining independently owned Scottish Distilleries, but also the only whisky company endorsed by the World Burns Federation. Such partnership authorises Isle of Arran Distillers to use Burns’s likeness and signature on their single malt, giving way to the Robert Burns Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

Arran distillery is situated 31 miles as the crow flies from Robert Burns’ birthplace, Alloway, and whilst it is reported he never personally visited the island, you can be sure he enjoyed the striking silhouette of Arrans hills every day from his home town. It is well documented that burns liked a swally, so it is certainly possible that he enjoyed a glass from one of Arrans illicit stills during his lifetime.

The Robert Burns Single Malt is bottled at 43%, mainly from American ex-bourbon casks, combined with a smaller proportion of ex-sherry hogsheads to introduce further complexity to the dram.

Picked up for very reasonable £27, the dram has a lot to live up to against Arran’s exceptional core range. Is it worth the money, or should you spend the extra £5 to get your hands on the tried and tested Arran 10yo? Let’s find out.

Official Tasting Notes:

Colour: Ayrshire Sunshine

Aroma: Sweet and creamy with notes of honey, toffee glazed pecans and fresh summer fruits.

Palate: Perfect combination of rich malt and lush vanilla. Light and sweet, followed by tantilising spice and oak.

Finish: Clean and fresh with an aftertaste of hazelnuts and milk chocolate.

“a true drop of liquid poetry and the perfect dram with which to toast the bard”.

AWG Tasting Notes:

Nose: Vanilla, Butterscotch, clotted cream, sweet raspberry/strawberry.

Palate: Gentle black pepper, complementing the vanilla/cream notes picked up on the nose

Finish: dry, medium finish.

The Robert Burns Single Malt has been a more than pleasant surprise. Exceptional value for money and they hit the complexity just right. It is clear that a lot of care has been put in to selecting the casks, and a lot of respect given to producing a dram in honour of the National Bard.

I will most certainly be raising a glass of Robert Burn Single Malt on the 25th January this year, and for every year to come. Not only is it the most fitting bottle to do so, but also a bottle worthy to carry the name of Rabbie Burns.

AWG Rating: 80/100

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