Burns Night the new Paddy's Day?
Scottish poets birthday will be marked by no less than two different celebrations this winter.
A few years ago, as far as most Copenhageners were concerned, Burns Night was strictly an Ungdomshuset affair: a few cars, the outbuilding of a nursery here and there, and along selected streets in Nørrebro.
It was only among the Anglo-speaking community that this was understood a little less literally as a relatively obscure annual celebration of the 1759 birthday of the poet the Scots like to call The Bard.
But while he may be no Shakespeare, Robert Burns has become his country’s biggest icon, and his special night has accordingly metamorphosed into Scotland’s second biggest drinking day, easily surpassing the feastday of the country’s patron saint in November, but still some distance behind the New Year celebration of Hogmanay.
So today it will surprise few to note that there are two celebrations marking his birthday in Copenhagen. The first, at the Dubliner (see story above) on Thursday January 23, is a proper Scottish knees-up where men in kilts and women who like men in kilts will wash down haggis with whisky galore and dance on the tables to songs like ‘Flower of Scotland’, ‘Scotland the Brave’ and ‘I would walk 500 miles’ by the Proclaimers.
The second, ‘Witches and Warlocks Dancing’, is a more sedate affair brought to you by the team at the underground food experience agency Silver.Spoon on February 8 (location to be confirmed). Scottish performer Richard O’Connor will recount the Burns classic ‘The tale of Tam O’Shantner’ on an evening when “a traditional Scottish dinner, irreverent entertainment and flowing libations” are on the cards.
In collaboration with four partners – The Cider House, Talisker Scotch Whisky, Chocolate & Love and Nørrebro Bryghus – Silver.Spoon has put together a special menu that includes bone marrow, catfish and, of course, haggis and whisky.