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Barging in Scotland: Caledonian Canal

Traditional Scottish Drinks

Enjoy traditional Scottish drinks - Scottish Highland Caledonian Canal Barge Whisky Trail Cruise

Scotland is famous for its incredible scenery, warm and welcoming people, and varied wildlife but it also boasts a rich history of fine traditional Scottish drinks, enjoyed in numerous styles.

Almost every corner of Scotland claims to have its own brewed or distilled Scottish drink, and many beverages have been produced for hundreds of years. When on a Scottish barge cruise, you will have the chance to sample an array of the drinks on offer — here's a few to give you a taste of the traditional Scottish drinks you might enjoy on your Highland travels…


Scottish drink Whipkull - Barging in Scotland cruise

This traditional and delightfully unusual Scottish drink, made from egg yolks, sugar, rum and cream, was once served at the breakfast table of Shetland lairds. Best drunk with a square of shortbread on the side, this tipple is a great option for those who enjoy a spot of afternoon tea.

Glasgow Punch

Scottish drink Glasgow Punch  - Scottish Highland Caledonian Canal Barge Cruise

Glascow Punch is another rum-based Scottish drink. This punch came about in the 19th century when the city was trading with the West Indies. Historically, the punch (concocted using sugar, lemon, lime, rum and water) was served at the Pig Club, the place at which wealthy aristocrats met and networked.

Blue Blazer

Scottish drink Blue Blazer  - Scottish Highland Caledonian Canal Barge Cruise

This warming hot toddy is a sipping drink. It combines the traditional Scottish drink of whisky with some boiling water, a teaspoon of sugar, and a twist of lemon peel. An exciting version of this drink was invented in the mid-1800s by Jerry "The Professor" Thomas where it was lit on fire and involves rolling flaming whisky from one mug to another.

Heather Ale

Scottish drink Heather Ale - Scottish Highland Caledonian Canal Barge Cruise

The authentic recipe for this traditional Scottish drink has been lost. It's said that the last man who had the recipe jumped from a cliff to avoid disclosing what was in the liquor. Although the original ingredients will never be truly known, the current recipe still dates back 300 years. It is brewed from an extract of heather blossoms combined with honey, spice, hops, and yeast, and it has been enjoyed since the early medieval period.

Highland Cordial

Scottish drink Highland Cordial - Scottish Highland Caledonian Canal Barge Cruise

This is a beautiful Scottish drink that sings with the flavors of Scotland. It's made with delicious white currants and mixed with lemon rind, ginger essence and whisky. After the liquid has been left in an air tight jar for two days, it is strained and mixed with sugar, then bottled and corked. Let it sit for three months and it's ready to enjoy.

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