Burns Night menu / order of service

#1
Have been tasked with running one of these and not being of a tight-fisted, buckfast quaff.... er, Scottish disposition, I was wondering whether someone could help me out with a suitable menu (beyond the obvious three) and order of service - readings, poems etc.

And a recipe for Atholl brose would be great.

msr
 
#2
Why don't you look up HQ 2 Div (HQ Scotland) on DII get the contact details for the Mess Cttee and drop the Ent Member an email.

Either that or start learning Tam o' Shanter

"when merket days are waring late
an folk egin tae tak the gate ....."
 
#3
Scotch broth / Cock a Leekie soup
Haggis, Neeps & Tatties.
Cheese & Oatcakes

(but you knew that)

Keep the meal short and simple as the night should be mainly speeches, recitals, songs and entertainment.

For fecks sake make sure there is someone who can do the Address, and someone to propose the 'Immortal Memory' in suitable fashion.
 
#5
msr said:
Have been tasked with running one of these and not being of a tight-fisted, buckfast quaff.... er, Scottish disposition, I was wondering whether someone could help me out with a suitable menu (beyond the obvious three) and order of service - readings, poems etc.

And a recipe for Atholl brose would be great.

msr
Bejeejus. I have to do everything meself round here. Call me, msr, and your webbing is sorted, and yes I can deliver.
 

Fang_Farrier

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#6
Do not, I repeat, do not allow anyone to do a Powerpoint as the Immortal Memory.

I nearly left a Burns supper last year when some cnut set up his laptop but there was still a free dram to arrive!
 
#8
You could always post this in the WOs/SNCOs thread if you want the full list as they probably run more of these than officers.

whf
 
#11
Burns Supper may be just an informal gathering of friends, or a grand and glittering event. Regardless of scale, if tradition is to be followed, there is a well worked pathway through the evening, including the following elements. If, however, you wish to steer a less conventional course, you may find our alternative ideas inspire you to be a bit more creative.

Opening Address
The host offers a few welcoming words to launch the proceedings, then invites the guests to start the supper with The Selkirk Grace.

Address to the Haggis
A piper leads in the chef, who carries the haggis to the top table. The host or invited guest then recites Burns’ Address to a Haggis and, at the line, “an’ cut you up wi' ready slight”, the haggis is pierced with a sharp knife. The address is normally accompanied with loud applause, after which all present stand and toast the haggis with a glass of whisky.

The Immortal Memory
A central feature of the evening, The Immortal Memory is a short and lively speech about Burns, delivered by an invited guest. The opportunity to deliver this is deemed a great honour and well worth the time and effort required. The tone is normally akin to a best man’s speech, highlighting the groom’s good character in an entertaining and affectionate way, outlining the enduring relevance of Burns and making reference to his poems or songs. The whole performance ends on an up-beat note with a toast: “To the immortal memory of Robert Burns!”

Toast to the Lassies
This is a light-hearted address to the women in the audience, albeit one that is respectful and humorous. This culminates with the toast: “To the Lassies!”.

Response to the Toast to the Lassies
The lassies then get a chance to respond with wit, charm and relevant quotations from Burns’ life and works.

Songs and Poems
The evening is interspersed with songs and poems, culminating in a rousing rendition of Auld Lang Syne.
 
#13
You can have my better half if you want..she is Pipe Major for our local pipe band...

..seriously..keep her...she is a good cook....nice tits too...


...please...you can honestly have her...

...oh..and she can play the pipes for piping in the haggis ;)
 
#14
Actually..come to think of it..can I have her back...she used to work in a distillary and not only has a great knowledge of whisky, she has a good collection too!
 
#15
wehappyfew said:
You could always post this in the WOs/SNCOs thread if you want the full list as they probably run more of these than officers.

whf
whf is right, Burns night is more a Sergeants' Mess sport. However when I have attended these it has often been a success to do something other than haggis as the main course (a nice chunk of Aberdeen Angus steak, perhaps?) to preserve the delicate sensibilities of some diners. Heresy I know as I love the stuff!

Oh, & be careful about serving just whisky instead of wine. It can end up quite messy :oops:
 
#16
CaptainPlume said:
wehappyfew said:
You could always post this in the WOs/SNCOs thread if you want the full list as they probably run more of these than officers.

whf
whf is right, Burns night is more a Sergeants' Mess sport. However when I have attended these it has often been a success to do something other than haggis as the main course (a nice chunk of Aberdeen Angus steak, perhaps?) to preserve the delicate sensibilities of some diners. Heresy I know as I love the stuff!

Oh, & be careful about serving just whisky instead of wine. It can end up quite messy :oops:
Alternatives are here for your pleasure

http://www.scotland.org/celebrate-scotland/organise-an-event/event-ideas/burns-supper/
 
#17
It's not Sergeants Mess sport in the same way as it's not officers Mess sport. It's not military sport, it's scottish - A scots gentleman will be a member of a Burns Club and will attend a number of events during the year but at a minimum will attend a commemorative dinner. This should be a normal scottish black tie meal but will normally have haggis, neeps & tatties as a post starter course. My suggestion would be:

1. Cock a Leekie or Lentil Broth or Cullen Skink
2. Haggis, Neeps & Tatties
3. Normal Main Course of your choice or Steak Pie if you wish to be uber scots
4. Cranachan
5. Cheese Board

Drink would normally be wine, with port for the loyal toast (although most burns clubs will leave both water and whisky on the table for that), followed by a comfort break then whatever the diner's drink of choice is. Non-whisky drinkers would be well advised to moderate their consumption of it.

In terms of readings, recitals or songs; Remember that they are meant to be entertainment and as such should be directed by the chairman of the dinner - if it's a remembrance dinner then the bare minimum would be an Introduction of the Top Table and Grace at the start of the proceedings, an Address to the Haggis which would be immediately proceeding the haggis course, then immortal memory, the lassies and the reply for the lassies. Only the address to the haggis and the immortal memory need to be burns as the point is to commemorate the man with activities he would enjoy not just to recite all of his works.

An important point is that for the military dress should be mess kit as burns was one of us.

The other important point is for it not to be uber scottish, if you aren't scots don't pretend to be - it's not necessary and just remember that whilst Regiments may do X,Y and Z this will be because they are continuing the Regiments tradition of how to do a burns night, not because any of the members necesarily know anything about burns!

One of my cringes is when George Robertson as Secretary General of NATO congratulated 2Lt Z for his service to the crown (all 6 years of it at that point)!
 
#18
zenith69uk said:
An important point is that for the military dress should be mess kit as burns was one of us.
Some excellent advice there, zenith, but "one of us"? When was Burns ever in the Army? (And I'd be delighted to be told he was, but it's news to me.)
 
#19
Democritus said:
zenith69uk said:
An important point is that for the military dress should be mess kit as burns was one of us.
Some excellent advice there, zenith, but "one of us"? When was Burns ever in the Army? (And I'd be delighted to be told he was, but it's news to me.)
He must mean 'Scottish'.

msr
 
#20
It's all a VERY peculiar "tradition". Why does it happen at all?

Ahhh - of course, a Scottish poet of some renown wrote stuff, so the British Army [and RN and RAF] have to "celebrate" it. And eat strange foreign food, and get pi55ed.

Personally I would sooner go to a Shakspere Night.
 
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