CTV Morning Live

Ottawa, ON

January 25, 2017

Today on CTV Morning Live, CTVs Henry Burris and Sommelier Matt Steeves were celebrating Robbie Burns Day by enjoying some of our favourite products from Robbie Burns’ native land…Scotch whisky! Here’s the CTV video of Henry Burris and Matt Steeves talking Scotch whisky and whisky cocktails for Robbie Burns Day!

January 25th is the day when the world takes a moment to celebrate the late iconic Scottish poet and lyricist, Robbie Burns (born 25 January 1759), who is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and a pioneer of the Romantic movement.  He was also a fan of whisky, well writing about it anyway!

Robbie Burns drew inspiration from the world around him to craft his most famous work.  Poems and songs like “Auld Lang Syne” and “A Red, Red Rose” were created by carefully placing words and arranging sentences.  When we think about Robbie Burns Day, we think of tradition, history and celebrating the legacy of an excellent craftsman. The craftsmanship of a master is also required to create delicious and aromatic whisky, like those from Glenmorangie and Ardbeg, which we’ve got with us today to taste!!!

Now although many celebrate Robbie Burns Day by participating in a Burns Supper, and chowing down on ‘haggis’, my celebration of Robbie Burns Day tends to focus more on skipping the haggis and instead enjoying a dram or two of delicious Scotch whisky!  Can you blame me…!?

With that in mind, I’ve got some delicious single malt Scotch whiskies here today which would be great to complement your celebrations this evening.  And since Scotch can vary so much in style depending on how long it was barrel aged and in what type of barrels (Sherry, Bourbon, Sauternes (wine)), there’s lots of choice and the three I’ve included today offer a great variety from consumer friendly (Glenmorangie The Original) to one of the boldest styles (Ardbeg 10 Year).

And for anyone that may be participating in Burns Night or a Burns Supper, to commemorate the life of the bard (poet) Robert Burns,  I wish you a wonderful evening! For those that aren’t familiar with a Burns Supper/Burns Night, in effect a second national day in Scotland, there’s a long-standing tradition in Scotland (and beyond), dating back over 200 years, which began a few years after the death of Robert Burns.

Of course a Burns Supper would not be a Burns Supper without a good helping of some traditional Scottish cuisine, accompanied by a few drams of fine Scotch whisky. It’s customary to serve three courses during the meal, including haggis.  For me, incorporating whisky, Scotland’s national drink, into your evening festivities is a must.  Whisky is an essential part of any good Burns Supper, and the whiskies we’re showing here are fantastic options to enjoy this Burns Night.

In honor of Robert Burns, I invite you to take the time this evening to savour some delicious Scotch whisky neat, on the rocks, or in a cocktail.  If you’re looking for some recommendations, the following three whiskies are very different yet equally terrific single malt whiskies that’d be terrific to enjoy this evening while celebrating the Scottish legend, Robbie Burns.

Glenmorangie The Original – 10 year old Single Malt Scotch whisky

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11_pDetail_Core_05_0Glenmorangie_Original_70cl_Bottle_T The original expression of Glenmorangie Whisky, its elegant, floral spirit is the real backbone of the Glenmorangie range. A ten-year-old single malt, Glenmorangie Original is produced by marrying the delicate spirit that emerges from Scotland’s tallest stills, with first and second fill American white oak casks. Maturing for ten long years in a range of ex-bourbon, it develops a perfect balance between sweetness and complexity. Perfect for enjoying at any time.

Available at LCBO – $72.10

Here are some of my favourite Scotch cocktails using Glenmorangie The Original:

The Original & very Old Fashioned – The Original’s take on the Old Fashioned cocktail

  • 50ml Glenmorangie Original
  • 4 dashes aromatic bitters
  • 1 bar spoon white granulated sugar
  • Garnish: orange twist

Combine the ingredients in a glass. Mix and muddle to dissolve sugar. Add ice (block ice preferred) and stir to chill and slightly dilute. Finish with an orange twist.

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Highland Julep

A spirited classic with a vivid flourish of aromatic mint
  • 50ml Glenmorangie Original
  • 12 mint leaves
  • 12.5ml sugar syrup
  • 1 dash aromatic bitters
  • Garnish: large mint sprig

Pour all the ingredients into a mixing glass then gently press the mint to extract the essential oils. Fill the mixing glass with cubed ice and stir to chill, dilute slightly and combine the ingredients. Then fill a julep cup with crushed ice, and single strain the liquid from mixing glass into the cup. Stir slightly and top up with crushed ice. To finish, add a large sprig of fresh mint – and a straw cut short to ensure the mint’s scent is appreciated.

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First on the Tee  – Ginger brings its zing to this uplifting serve

  • 50ml Glenmorangie Original
  • 100ml ginger ale
  • Garnish: lime wedge

Fill a glass with cubed ice, combine Glenmorangie Original and ginger ale and add a squeezed lime wedge to garnish.

ORIGINAL_First on the Tee

Glenmorangie The Lasanta

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Elegant but full bodied this whisky has spent ten years maturing in American white oak ex-bourbon casks before being extra-matured for a further two years in Oloroso and PX Sherry casks from Jerez in Spain.

Lasanta is Gaelic for warmth and passion, a reminder not just of the Spanish provenance of these Oloroso sherry butts, but also a reflection of this expression’s lusciously soft texture and deep, enticingly sweet aroma.

Gaelic for “warmth and passion,” the 12-year-old single-malt Lasanta is extra-matured in Spanish sherry casks, revealing enticing aromas, full-bodied flavours and a lusciously soft texture.  The creation of Lasanta is an exercise in fine-tuning, with Glenmorangie’s craftsmen seeking a smoother, sweeter whisky than is traditional in the Highlands.

Available at LCBO – $90.75

Lasanta Old Fashioned

Smoothness and spice, fashioned to delight
  • 50ml Glenmorangie Lasanta
  • 4 dashes aromatic bitters
  • 1 bar spoon white granulated sugar
  • Garnish: orange twist

Combine the ingredients in a glass. Mix and muddle to dissolve sugar. Add ice (block ice preferred) and stir to chill and slightly dilute. Finish with an orange twist.

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The Lasanta Rob Roy

The story behind the Rob Roy (Scotch Whisky Manhattan) goes back to the early 18th century. Vilified by the crown and the government as a cattle thief, worshiped by the people as a hero and resistance fighter, he went down in the history of Scotland and was a role model for authors such as Sir Walther Scott, even Hollywood loved his story.  We are talking about Rober Roy MacGregor, also known as Rob Roy.  Fast forward to the end of the 19th century and the Rob Roy cocktail emerges.

While in the early days of Manhattan, and later Rob Roy, spirits and vermouth were often mixed in equal parts, over time they have given more space to the spirit base in these fine cocktails.

A classic Rob Roy is prepared as follows:

50 ml Scotch whisky

Salted-Rob-Roy

20 ml sweet red Vermouth

1-3 dashes of Bitters (mostly Angostura Bitters)

Stir the mixture cold on ice and place in a pre-chilled coupe and garnish with a cocktail cherry and/or an orange twist.

Lasanta Rob Roy © www.spirit-ambassador.de

Ardbeg Ten Years Old

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AD_10YO_750ml.jpg The multi award-winning Ardbeg Ten Years Old was introduced in 2000 and was named World Whisky of the Year in 2008 by Jim Murray. It is non-chill-filtered, bottled at 46% ABV for maximum texture and mouth-feel and matured in a balance of 1st fill oak barrels, which deliver vanilla sweetness, and 2nd fill oak barrels, which deliver spiciness, and ex-bourbon American Oak casks to incorporate even more complexity.  Regarded as one of the most heavily peated whiskies, Ardbeg 10 Years Old showcases the fragrant smoke and peat character that aficionados admire about this prized Scotch.

Available at LCBO – $100.10

And for the morning after Robbie Burns Day, there’s no better remedy than a delicious Ardbeg Caesar…

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Ever wonder what exactly a single malt Scotch is?

To be a single malt Scotch the whisky must have been distilled at a single distillery, in Scotland, using a pot still distillation process, and made from a masth of malted grain. In Scotland, the only grain allowed to be used in a single malt whisky is barley. As with any Scotch a single malt Scotch must be distilled in Scotland and matured in oak casks, also in Scotland, for at least three years and one day (most single malts are matured longer…in fact most are a minimum 10 or 12 years, and go up to 40+ years, although those are astronomically priced and very hard to come by).

“Malt” indicates that the whisky is distilled from a “malted” grain. In the case of single malt Scotch, barley is the only grain used.

“Single” indicates that all the spirits in the bottle come from a single distillery. Bottlings containing malt whisky from multiple distilleries are called “blended malt“.

The age statement on a bottle of single malt Scotch is the number of years the whisky spent maturing in casks. Very few whiskies are bottled from a single cask, and the mixing of spirits with different amounts of ageing is allowed (such as 10, 11, 12, 13 year olds); the age statement reflects the age of the youngest whisky in the mix (10 year old in the example).

Enjoy your Robbie Burns celebrations and Scotch whisky!  Stay classy my friends!

Matt Steeves –  Sommelier, Wine Writer, and Director with the National Capital Sommelier Guild (www.sommelierguild.com)  Follow Matt on Twitter @QuercusVino  and check out  www.mattswinepicks.com for his top wine and spirits picks.