The Ultimate Burns Night Guide

Updated: Jan 27

Celebrate Scotland's famous poet with some fantastic food & drink experiences

It's that time of year again where we celebrate the life and times of Scotland’s most honored poet, Robert Burns. Famous for such works as ‘Auld Lang Syne’ – which is recited at many a celebration including New Year’s – ‘A Red, Red Rose’ and, of course ‘Address to a Haggis’ the famous bard has captured the hearts and minds of many a Scot. Tonight we celebrate his work and legacy by enjoying some poetry, enjoying a dram of whisky and tucking into a tasty burns supper.

Speaking of supper, what is the typical serving on tonight's occasion? Burns Supper has been served on the poets birthday since 1803 and traditionally consists of some cock-a-leekie-soup for starters, followed up by a plate of haggis, neeps & tatties alongside plenty of drink! While a lot has changed over 219 years, the traditional burns supper, much like the poets legacy, has endured, seeing little to no changes over the years. If you fancy creating some delicious cock-a-leekie soup for the occasion, be sure to check out the recipe here! If your also looking for the perfect dram to celebrate be sure to check out our whisky guide written by Gavin A Smith!

Want to dine in style in honour of Scotland greatest poet? Read on as we discuss some fantastic options to choose from throughout Scotland from various price points.

£25pp and under

Harvey Nichols, Edinburgh

Harvey Nichols is no stranger to celebration, and to celebrate the national poet they have brought together the Robert Burns Celebration Menu. Running between January 24th - January 29th, for £25pp, guests can enjoy some traditional Cullen Skink, Haggis Neeps & Tatties and cranachan for dessert. Visitors can also enjoy a dram of Glengoyne 10 year old single malt whisky overlooking the city for an extra fiver in honour of the poets timeless poetry, What could be better?

The Ivy on the Square, Edinburgh

Overlooking the iconic St Andrew’s Square, The Ivy is bringing the celebrations to one of Edinburgh’s most scenic locations. The restaurant is also remixing the typical burns supper affairs with some creations of its own. Serving up Haggis Bon Bons, Haggis Neeps and Tatties Shepherd’s Pie and Hazelnut Praline Parfait for dessert, alongside a range of delicious whisky cocktails, this is the perfect stop for those wishing to celebrate a little differently.

Glad Café, Glasgow

This lovely grassroots venue, is offering a 3 course supper for 22.50 pounds combined with whiskey. With Celtic Connections playing regularly at the venue throughout the week, it is a perfect place to embrace and pay respects to Scottish traditions.

Byron Burger, Edinburgh

Do you enjoy burgers and Burns Night in equal measure? Then why not choose both and pay a visit to Byron Burger and check out their Scottish exclusive creation: the Auld Smoke burger. This special burger contains haggis and whisky barbecue sauce, letting you enjoy your burns supper in a unique – and delicious – meal.

Dukes Umbrella, Glasgow

Whether you wish to enjoy some homemade haggis, neeps & tatties or something less traditional, the Dukes Umbrella has got you covered. Slow-braised and smoked ox cheek and charcoal spiced cod are just a couple of the delicious substitutes on offer. If you are feeling thirsty, their array of fantastic whisky cocktails will be sure to satisfy.

£50pp and under

Bonnie & Wild, Edinburgh

Looking to satisfy a variety of palettes? Then Bonnie & Wild at St James Quarter is your one-stop-shop. Enjoy cullen skink at Chef Gary Maclean's Creel Caught, tuck into a haggis burger from El Perro Negro or have some traditional haggis, neeps & tatties from The Gannet East amongst many more. The bars will also have some fantastic beers and tipple on offer and if you are seeking a bottle to celebrate back home, be sure to grab something special at Inverarity Morton.

The Bothy Glasgow

£40 per person

Another wonderful restaurant that is gearing up to honor the life and works of Burns. There are plenty of dates at this locale, with a traditional dinner being hosted on the 25th of January. There will be a live piper and a traditional toast to the haggis, furthermore there are Vegan and Vegetarian options available. The Bothy always has a reputation for excellent traditional Scottish foods, the menu this night does not disappoint either. The restaurant is serving smoked haddock cullen skink, thyme roasted venison haunch & butternut squash wellington with roast shallot purée. Guests will be welcomed with an Old Fashioned cocktail upon arrival.

Oran Mor

A classic at this time of year, the large venue is located at the top of Byers Road. Guests can enjoy a traditional Scottish celebration complete with Piper, Haggis and Champit Tatties and a Toast to the Lassies along with a dram on arrival and entertainment. Known for its traditional Scottish food and live performances. With a luxurious dinner served in the Auditorium and live music from the likes of Dave Anderson and Brian James O’Sullivan, it is definitely one to consider. Tickets cost £50pp.

Hendersons, Edinburgh

With google search data revealing that search numbers for “Vegan Haggis Recipe” has increased by a whopping 1281% today, why not on over to the iconic Hendersons? The rebirth of the legendary vegan restaurant has proven to be a success so be sure to book a table to enjoy a plant-based 5 course vegan menu including some fantastic vegan haggis and a glass of prosecco or mocktail on arrival. Expect some bagpipes & poetry throughout the evening as well! Want to read our thoughts on the new Hendersons? If so then read our review!

Sloan’s, Glasgow

£50 per person

The oldest pub in Glasgow is hosting a Burns Supper in the Grand Ballroom on the 28th January. The dignified setting is made even more so by the Chitterybite Ceilidh Band that will be performing for the guests. Enjoy the traditional Burns supper fare (Haggis & Cock-a-leekie Soup) as well as Chicken-liver pate, Chicken Balmoral, alongside a helping of poems and bagpipes.

Glaschu, Glasgow

For some premium dining options beyond the usual Burns Night staples, Glaschu is a fantastic choice. Whether its char-grilled fillet of scotch beef, roasted north sea monkfish or roast cauliflower "steak", you are sure to be satisfied by their offerings. In the drinks department, be sure to try their range of whisky cocktails which includes the William Robertson and Forbes.

Luxury top end

Barony Castle Hotel, Peebles

£49 Dinner & Entertainment / £98 1 Night DBB

A Burns Night Dinner serving locally sourced Scottish dishes. A piper will accompany the haggis as it is paraded into the hall, followed by the ‘Address to a Haggis’. A Ceilidh and live music from the Sultans of Fling will lead to a fantastic party atmosphere for all ages. Highlights of the menu include haggis in whisky sauce, black pudding bon bons, pan-fried local fillet of trout and clootie dumplings.

Contini, Edinburgh

£55-75 per person

Do you enjoy live music, celidh dancing and good food? Then you are in luck as Contini is back with their famous Burns Night celebrations. Tuck into a 4-course meal which includes heatherfield smoked salmon, Findlay’s of Portobello haggis and some cranachan for dessert. A drinks package is also available which includes a glass of fizz, a nip of whisky and a half-bottle of wine alongside your supper.

Balbirnie House Hotel

For a truly fine dining experience to celebrate the occasion in style, why not pay a visit to the Balbirnie House Hotel. With a truly delightful seven-course tasting menu for £35 per person at the Orangery, you will not be disappointed. If you wish to enhance your tasting experience further, be sure to try their wine flight for £26 per person which will pair perfectly with your meal.

Brig o'Doon House Hotel, Alloway

£75 Dinner & Entertainment

If your festive spirit hasn't waned by the 5th March, then Ayrshire Hospice have organised a Burns Supper in the Ayrshire heartland of Burns country. Complete with dinner, entertainment, and further fundraising opportunities, all the while you're having fun you'll also be making a real difference to a local charity. So be sure to tuck into some haggis and enjoy a dram for a good cause!

Fife Arms, Braemar

£1,408 Cheapest 2 Night DBB / £5,296 Luxury 2 Night DBB

A range of two person rooms for your two night stay, which includes Breakfast in the Clunie dining room, Formal Burns Dinner with an Address to the Haggis, and Evening entertainment; including traditional readings and musical performances. The weekend reader is Jackie Kay, who recently ended her tenure as Scotland’s Makar (Poet Laureate). Weekend guests will also receive a ticket to Jackie’s ‘in conversation’ event at St Margaret’s, Braemar on Sunday 23rd at 2pm. Enjoy some locally sourced haggis as well as their very own Blended Malt Scotch Whisky to commemorate the occasion.

An Edinburgh Burns Night (Mary King’s Close & Amber Restaurant)

£62 per person

If you fancy a Burns experience like no other then be sure to check out An Edinburgh Burns Night. This unique event includes a tour of the preserved Mary King’s Close underneath the Royal Mile, while also enjoying some poetry and a dram throughout. Once the tour has concluded you’ll be treated to a three-course taste of Scotland Burns menu at Amber Restaurant. Enjoy some Haggis, neeps and tatties, braised ox cheek and cranachan amongst other options as well as some fantastic whisky.

Cairndale Hotel & Leisure Club, Dumfries

£35 Dinner & Entertainment / £94.50 1 Night DBB / £149 2 Night DBB

A traditional Burns Supper complete with music, poetry and dancing for a memorable evening of toe-tapping entertainment on January 29. Featuring Claire Hastings, former BBC Young Traditional Musician of the Year, as well as an array of performers, guests can celebrate the national poet’s birthday in song and style. Enjoy haggis, cock-a-leekie soup, clootie dumplings and much more as you honor Scotland's greatest bard.

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