A world of history and whisky at the Globe

Affectionately known by Scotland’s national poet Robert Burns as his “favourite howff”, or haunt, we’re delighted to welcome the Globe Inn in Dumfries as our newest Scottish partner bar. Steeped in history, it’s a pub that celebrates a past dating back to 1610 while looking brightly towards the future with owner and long-time SMWS member David Thomson at the helm

David, who has been a member of the Society for over 25 years, knows a thing or two about whisky himself, being the co-founder of nearby Annandale Distillery. His whisky journey is led by his own passions. “The universe of single malts available from Scotch whisky distilleries is unparalleled,” says David. “Nowhere else in the world is there such variety. The great attraction for me is in experiencing sensory differences across this vast range.”

This range is mirrored in the Globe’s selection of whiskies, which includes over 300 different expressions including a considerable range of non-Scotch whiskies. There are big plans to increase the offering too. “We aim to stock over 100 single cask single malts, largely from Annandale distillery and the SMWS,” says David.


In addition to a rich selection of whisky, visitors to the Globe Inn can book a tour and learn about the inn’s rich past – including the connections with Burns’s legacy.

The tour includes a visit to the bedroom, kitchen and dining room where the Bard was a frequent guest.

It’s best to arrive with some Burns prepared – should you be invited to sit in his chair, you’re obliged to recite some of his poetry or face buying the entire inn a drink!

So intertwined are the Globe and Burns that it’s suggested that the first ever Burns Supper may have taken place here, in 1819.

On January 25th, the Mausoleum Committee met at the Globe and decided to host a celebration annually on what would have been the poet’s 60th birthday.

“It was Robert Burns who wrote ‘Freedom an’ whisky gang thegither’,” says David, but as he reminds us, the Globe had centuries of history under its belt even before Burns graced its halls.

“The Globe Inn, Dumfries, was established in 1610, making it one of the oldest hostelries in Scotland. The SMWS whisky bar at the Globe is housed within its world-famous Snug, one of the most iconic drinking establishments anywhere.”


In addition to the Snug, the Globe Inn serves up fresh locally sourced Scottish fare in its 1610 Restaurant led by the Globe Inn’s Michelin-experienced chefs, Jonathan Brett and Fraser Cameron, along with chef de partie Gary Spratt.

With excellent food and whisky on offer along with the lure of an intriguing history, the Globe continues to pick up acclaim far and wide. As for what it means to David to be an SMWS partner bar, he says: “As a long-standing member of SMWS I am very keen to be associated with the Society, particularly because of its pursuance of single cask excellence.”


Although the Globe Inn is closed until April 2021, it’s one to pencil into your future travel plans. “The Globe Inn, Dumfries is one of the most iconic hostelries in Scotland, if not the world, so it’s only right and proper that it should offer a superb collection of Scotland’s national beverage” says David. “Our Snug Bar and tasting rooms really lend themselves to exceptional Scotch whisky experiences.” We can’t wait to visit!