Famous Whisky Toasts

Written by Sholto Ramsay on Tuesday, 22 May 2012. Posted in Scotch Whisky

Famous Whisky Toasts

At most social functions in Scotland a toast will be proffered at the appropriate moment. So, for any occasion there is always a suitable toast which can range from the serious to the lighthearted.

Fortunately, the Gaels have always had a twinkle in their eye and the majority of toasts usually raise the spirits of the assembled company.

Here’s a small selection of traditional toasts and graces which are still widely used in Scotland today. Where dialect is used the relevant words have been translated.

Good health!

~ The Selkirk Grace ~

This was penned by Robert Burns and is a grace said before eating at many Scottish gatherings, especially the traditional Burns Suppers held throughout the world on January 25.

Some hae meat, and canna eat, And some wad eat that want it; But we hae meat, and we can eat And sae the Lord be thankit.

~ The Poet's Graces ~

A pair of graces by Burns, one said before a meal and one afterwards.

O Thou who kindly dost provide For every creature's want! We bless Thee, God of Nature wide, For all thy goodness lent. And, if it please Thee, heavenly Guide, May never worse be sent; But, whether granted or denied, Lord bless us with content.

(After the meal)

O Thou, in whom we live and move, Who made the sea and shore; Thy goodness constantly we prove, And grateful would adore; And if it please Thee, Power above! Still grant us with such store The friend we trust, the fair we love, And we desire no more.

~ Here's Tae Us ~

Here's tae us Wha's like us Damn few, And they're a' deid Mair's the pity!

~ There's Nae Luck Aboot the Hoose ~

This is a popular toast by Allan Ramsay of Ayr.

May the best you've ever seen Be the worst you'll ever see; May a moose ne'er leave yer girnal Wi' a teardrop in his e'e. May ye aye keep hale and hearty Till ye're auld enough tae dee, May ye aye be just as happy As I wish ye aye tae be.

(girnal- meal chest; moose- mouse)

May those who live truly be always believed, And those who deceive us be always deceived.

Here's to the men of all classes, Who through lasses and glasses Will make themselves asses!

I drink to the health of another, And the other I drink to is he In the hope that he drinks to another, And the other he drinks to is me.

Then let us toast John Barleycorn, Each man a glass in hand Andy may his great prosperity Ne'er fail in old Scotland!

~ Here’s A Bottle ~

Here's a bottle and an honest man! What wad ye wish for mair, man? Wha kens, before his life may end, What his share may be o' care, man?

Then catch the moments as they fly, And use them as ye ought, man. Believe me happiness is shy, And comes not aye when sought, man!

Robert Burns

~ Here's Looking at You ~

Here's to me and here's to you, And if in the world There was just us two And I could promise that nobody knew Would you?

Jacobite toasts were popular and this is one of the better known ones.

Weel may we a' be Ill may we never see; Here's to the King And the gude companie. Here's a health to them that's away, Here's a health to them that's away, Here's a health to them that were here shortsyne, An, canna be here today.

And if you really want to confuse your guests, try this!

Here's to all those that I love. Here's to all those that love me. And here's to all those that love those that I love, And all those that love those that love me.