Compass Box Flaming Heart 10th Anniversary
17th Sep 2012
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Tasting Notes by numen
Nose: smoke more than peat, but also a light, refined creaminess with fruit. Grapefruit, lemon drops and lemon cream. Lively and fresh. The fruit plays a bit nervously under the smokiness. It comes out at times, and also hides behind it. You can tell that there's a spirit there, but it just tops in at a pleasant level. More of 'hay' in the smoke, and a slightly coastal quality.
Palate: No water needed, and really should be avoided. A little deliciously oily. Delicious. The smoke, unsurprisingly, leads, but quickly pulls up like a theater curtain, giving way to the complex performance underneath. A trace of smoke remains, adding a seductive quality, drawing attention to the lovely display below, but also creating an appeal for more smoke - thus it's the perfect amount. Flavors of lemon (creamy), flaxseed oil, vanilla, and oak. Other fruit is also present, papaya and mango, but very calm. There's also some bitterness, but more in a balancing way on the palate.
Finish: Like the palate, but more refined. The fruit and grapefruit become more obvious, as does the creaminess, and it melds with the smoke to create a really gorgeous finish, and more than the blend of its parts. A+
I'm not going to lie; I went nuts over this. I called up a bunch of folks to rave about it, and I did buy a bottle of the 4th release. I'll definitely get another bottle or two when it hits the US in a few weeks. It's supposed to go for around $100, and it's a bargain for the quality. It's more on my palate, liking something a little sweet, but the smoke with it is just perfect. The Caol Ila smoke works brilliantly with the Clynelish fruit and hay. My biggest challenge with this is simply that it did not make for a good night-cap because it really got me energized. Really just great stuff and easily one of my favorite whiskies period.