The Macallan Borders Literary Tour Thu 30 Oct~Sun 2 Nov. departs from Dram Central. Assembly Rooms. 54 George Street. 0131 226 6665. llam. £35. The link between hard drink and literary inspiration is unproven. but many a writer has been partial to a wee dram. This is a chance to get out of the city and into your heritage with coach tours to the Borders and Burns country. with a stop for lunch at a roadside inn if you get a bit dry. Scottish Evening King James Thistle Hotel. 107 Leith Street. 0131 556 7441. £30. Specially for the festival. a Scottish night with banquet and traditional song and dance.

Dram Central Assembly Rooms. 54 George Street. 0131 2204349. Fri 31 Oct—Sat 1 Nov. 10am—4pm. £3. lfyou don't think you can taste the Speyside


vegetarian vegan

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7 Old Fishmarket Close Edinburgh

Lunch and Dinner Monday to Thursday. Friday. Saturday and Sunday open all day telephone 0131 225 5428

water in a Glen Grant. or the subtleties of a well-aged malt. a tutored tasting in the Glenlivet Room will put you right. Open daily. the Assembly Rooms is the festival’s focal point and ticket price includes these and many other attractions. The Glenmorangie Cask Room offers tastings of the wood finish range of whiskies, while The Gaelic Whiskies will be promoting their unchilfiltered malts and blends. and you can also try Drambuie on ice.

The Flavour Of Scotland Assembly Rooms. 54 George Street. 220 4349. 11am & 2pm. £10 includes day admission to Dram Central. Chuck away that cooking wine. Celebrity chefs are on hand to give you ideas for incorporating a far superior beverage into your cooking. Today. Hotel ChefOfThe Year Philippe Wagenfuhrer is at l lam and Jeff Bland from Edinburgh‘s Balmoral Hotel is at 2pm. See also Sat 1.

Hallowe'en Party Assembly Rooms. 54 George Street. 0131 220 4349. Fri 31 Oct. 8pm-2am. £25. See off the spooks armed with nothing but a light supper. Dance the night away until well beyond the witching hour. Featuring DJ Trendy Wendy. plus The Elvises and The Cutting Edge Ceilidh Band.

The Scotch Club The Palladium. Broughton Street. 0131 220 4349. from 8.30pm. £10. Your compere for the evening will be Jane Mackay of The Stand Comedy Club. The Humpff Family headline while live comedy and DJs will keep the party swinging.

The Bells Ex erience See Thu 30. Drambuie hisky Festival Films The Filmhouse. 88 Lothian Road. 0131 228 2688. 8.30pm. £4.70. In [Know Where] Am Going. Joan Webster. engaged to a rich industrialist. has strong ideas about her future. However on a visit to the Western Isles she encounters an altogether different way of life in this Scottish classic. See Thu 30. Sat 1 and film listings.

The Macallan Borders Literary Tour See Thu 30.

The Macallan Literary Pub Tour Departs from The Beehive lnn. Grassmarket. various times. details on 0131 554 0777. £6. A walking tour of Edinburgh‘s streets introduced by professional actors and retracing the steps of famous writers like Rabble Burns. Robert Louis Stevenson and Sir Walter Scott. b way of the odd pub. The Angels' Share Scotch Whisky Heritage Centre. 354 Castlehill. 0131 556 7441. Fri 31 ()ct—Sat 1 Nov. 2.30pm. £10 ticket includes tour and two free drams. Robin Laing celebrates Scotch whisky. as recorded in music and verse through the years.

Exhibition of Jacobite Glass Fri 3| Oct—Sun 2 Nov. 11am—3pm. Free. tickets from Dram Central. Call 013i 220 4349 for venue information. The Drambuie Collection of 18th century glassware incorporates everything from wine and liqueur glasses. goblets and decanters right down to fingerbowls. Shown for the first time in public. it is one of the largest and finest collections of its kind.

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. Nick Nairn heads the celebrity chefs-ti

combining fine whisky with culinary expertise at the festival. . . Scotch Whisky is a somewhat neglected ingredient. but celebrity chef Nick Nairn is an eager exponent of whisky in food, and will be extolling it’s virtues in the Flavour of Scotland events at the Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh.

'It is a very Scottish ingredient. and for me as a Scottish chef it makes sense.’ he explains.

However, he admits it can be daunting: 'Whisky has a very strong, distinctive flavour. It works well with some things, such as game, but you have to use it with care.’

The chef, whose Glasgow restaurant Nairn's opens in Woodside Crescent, Charing Cross

Nick Nairn: whisky is the


resets. . .Hr- gf. diets?"

.1 .1. tar-tee. on 24 November, will prepare Drambuie Oranges. which'he calls one of my favourite things in the world'. He also recommends ‘7; steak flambéed with a whisky sauce. 'Whisky is a great ingredient "1‘ especially the full-flavoured Islay malts which give a big, smokey flavounf‘ifl

he says.

Traditional Scottish desserts, such as Cranachan, are dependent on whisky. for their distinctiveness. Nairn's will also be offering malt whisky parfait ‘1 with prunes and tea syrup, and 'hot teddy souffle', inspired by the flavourings of a cold cure but mixed into a sumptuous dessert it is just as

good when you are healthy.

Nairn tends only to cook with single malts, which can be a little pricey. ’Unfortunately, cooking with good whisky is expensive,’ he concedes. 'For peppered steak you could perhaps get away with a blend, but desserts

should always be made with malt.’

He hopes amateur chefs will come away from the sessions inspired. -

is always room for experimentation, he points out: 'l'm working on a t y version of gravadlax with salmon marinaded in whisky. I haven't perfected“? it yet. but the flavours work very well.’ (Stephen Naysmith) .4 . I Nick Nairn is part of The Flavour Of Scotland, Assembly Rooms, 31 Oct-1 Nov 4. f 10 (includes day admission to Dram Central). iiam & 2pm. See listings. ~ '


The Malt Masterclass The Sheraton Hotel. 1 Festival Square. full day starting 9.30am. £250. For more details and reservations. call 0131 552 7291. A day- long masterclass designed for whisky lovers who want to extend their knowledge of the drink. It involves three two-hour sessions followed by dinner and a fourth. evening session. Participants who prove they understand their whisky are awarded a Mall Masterclass Certificate. Also includes a demonstration of whisky distilling using a scaled version of a copper pot still. Dram Central See Fri 3 I.

The Flavour Of Scotland Assemny Rooms. 54 George Street. 0131 220 4349. 11am 8; 2pm. £ 10 includes day admission to Dram Central. Wi/(l

Han'est’s Nick Nairn is on hand to give you ideas for incorporating whisky into your cooking.

The Whisky Festival Ceilidh Assembly Rooms. 54 George Street. 0131 220 4349. 8pm-2am. £12. Another chance to pretend you know the dances. or laugh at the people who really do and are. of course. completely missing the point. Local band Deaf Shepherd lead the revels.

The Scotch Club The Palladium. Broughton Street. 0131 220 4349. from 8.30pm. £10. Details of Dls and stand up comedy to be announced. but The Tartan Amoebas will to the bill.

The Bells Experience See Thu 30. Drambuie Whisky Festival Films The Filmhouse. 88 Lothian Road. 0131 228 2688. 8.30pm. £4.70. Set in Scotland. The Spv In Black features the commander

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