The Story Behind The Bobby Burns

Looking to create a drink that’s widely underappreciated and makes the most of your Scotch collection? The sultry Bobby Burns, served up in a classy cocktail glass, might be the one for you.

The Bobby Burns is a riff on the Rob Roy, which is itself a riff on the Manhattan. Hazy origins surround the drink, which replaces the original Rob Roy’s bitters with Bénédicine liqueur. The combination appears in Henry Craddock’s legendary “Savoy Cocktail Book,” where it’s described as “one of the best whisky cocktails.”

While the Bobby Burns profile exudes complexity, its preparation is fairly simple. Blended Scotch, vermouth, and Bénédictine are mixed until cold, strained into a chilled cocktail glass (we love a Nick & Nora), and topped off with a zesty lemon twist.

The result is a deep amber cocktail, brimming with an unexpected burst of citrus to counter the cocktail’s sweet and savory notes.

Keep reading to mix and sip one of your own.


  • 1 1/2 ounces blended Scotch
  • 1 1/2 ounces sweet vermouth
  • 2 dashes (barspoons) Bénédictine
  • Garnish: 1 lemon twist


  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice.
  2. Stir until cold and strain into a chilled Nick & Nora glass.
  3. Garnish with an expressed lemon twist.

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(89 votes)

Yield: 1
Calories: 195
Updated: 2024-04-15

Bobby Burns