Though once a drink solely reserved for old men or weathered history teachers, whisky has made an almighty comeback in the last few years to reclaim its place among the country’s favourite spirits.
And what better time to celebrate this most versatile of tipples than on World Whisky Day?
The toast the big day, which takes place every year on May 20, we got the low-down from DesignMyNight on the best places across the UK to sink a few glasses of “the water of life”.
Here are the best whisky bars in Britain.
Located in the heart of Soho, Swift is a sleek bar spanning two floors and is ideal for a lavish drink or two. You’ll want to head downstairs though, where it’s literally all about the whisky.
The extensive menu spans a massive twelve pages, with Scotch, Irish, American and world whiskies all on offer. The bar staff will also be on hand to guide you through the different options, whatever your tastes might be.
Blues Kitchen Camden
Giving a firm nod to the American South, it’s no wonder Blues Kitchen stock over 100 bespoke bourbons.
Whether you want to enjoy your blend on the rocks or in a signature cocktail, your drink here comes accompanied by live music and delicious Texan food. Head over on the 20th for a set from bluesy UK favourites, The Dirty Robbers.
Balls Brothers Exchange Austin Friars
If you’re after a Friday warm up for World Whisky Day, there’s no better place than the Whisky Emporium at Balls Brothers Exchange.
Located in the heart of the city, this place covers a range of flavours from smoky, delicate and rich options, to floral and fruity tastes.
Bloomsbury Club London
Not only is Bloomsbury Club one of London’s most idyllic hotel bars; it’s also home to over fifty types of whisky.
Much like its retro literary theme; you’ll find whiskies old and new, from all corners of the globe here. Spanning a valuable Sazerac rye to a rare Macallan ruby scotch, you’ll only be sipping on the best.
The Lion and Lobster
The Lion and Lobster is one of Brighton’s oldest boozers, but not only does this traditional pub pack a lot of vintage charm, it has a huge selection of whiskies on offer too.
Whether you’re after a Scotch, American bourbon or an aged single malt; The Lion and Lobster’s eclectic selection suits lovers and novices alike.
Worship Street Whistling Shop
A stone’s throw from Liverpool Street you’ll discover Worship Street Whistling Shop; a Victorian-style bar with an impressive whisky collection.
This bar is bursting with character; but it’s the whisky-based cocktails you’ll want to head down for on the 20th.
Offering everything from American white whisky and spiced watermelon concoctions, to Scotch with naga chilli lemonade; this Shoreditch hangout won’t be holding back.
REST OF ENGLAND:
Lost In Tokyo – Manchester
Situated in the popular Northern Quarter is Lost In Tokyo; a little slice of the Japanese city in the heart of Manchester.
These guys stock oriental beer and wines, but it’s their selection of Japanese whiskies that are worth writing home about. Stocking 24 different options, this unique hangout won’t disappoint come World Whisky Day.
The Victoria – Birmingham
The Victoria is a boozer of many talents, but their whisky collection makes it an obvious haunt to visit on the 20th.
If you get stuck choosing, they have a whisky guide with flavour facts on over fifty options to help you decide. Better yet, once you’re done trialing the best drams, you can tuck into one of their delicious sourdough pizzas to soak up all your hard work.
Oran Mor – Glasgow
Once an old church, Oran Mor has been converted into a nightlife haven that boasts two restaurants, two bars, an auditorium and a nightclub; but you’ll want to head straight to the whisky bar come the 20th.
Boasting one of the most impressive whisky selections in the city, with over 280 malts to choose from, you’re sure to find one that tickles your fancy.
Balmoral Hotel – Edinburgh
If you love your whisky, then make sure you get down to the Scotch Bar at the Balmoral Hotel for World Whisky Day this year.
Dedicated solely to the Scottish national drink, you’ll find over 500 whiskies from all over the country in this stunning bar. There will be ambassadors on hand to help you choose the perfect dram, and each whisky is accompanied with a snack to enhance the flavour.
For more info on what’s on in London and across the UK, visit DesignMyNight and follow them on Twitter and Instagram; @DesignMyNight.