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Compass Box Orangerie

Whisky Based Orange Spice Liqueur

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@VictorReview by @Victor

22nd Mar 2011


Compass Box Orangerie
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Some have pointed out, correctly, that Compass Box Orangerie does not exactly meet the strict definition of whisky by virtue of its addition of orange zest, cloves, and cassia (what is sold as "cinnamon" 98% of the time). The base is highland malt whisky blended with some "grain whisky".

Nose: the orange zest hits you immediately and powerfully together with cloves and cassia. There is a hint of the malt in the background when you look for it.

Taste: the orange and spices are what you get first and second. It is both quite sweet and quite sour at the same time, with the sour likely largely or entirely deriving from the orange zest. The taste of malt and of "blended Scotch whisky" comes through to a moderate degree after about 10 seconds. To my palate this tastes very much like Grand Marnier liqueur which is made from cognac and bitter orange.

Finish: this finishes after a very long time of experiencing the orange and spices, with a mild sweetness and the taste of barley malt whisky.

Balance: I didn't want to buy this bottle, but my wife insisted that we do, after enthusiastic reports she had gotten about Orangerie from a bartender with whom she works. I am very glad that we did buy it. It is delightful and innovative. Orangerie, in the details of its delivery, really does taste rather different from anything you are ever likely to have tasted. From a practical perspective, it would seem most to fit into a dessert/after dinner type of desired place for consumption. What I find most interesting about Orangerie are the vivid intensity of the orange-spice flavours and the very interesting fading from them to finish on the taste of malt whisky.

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TracerBullet commented

Really nice review. I was on the skeptical side myself about the purchase of Orangerie and, like you, I am glad that I did purchase it. I tend to grab this bottle around the holidays. The orange and spice makes me think of Christmas! If you haven't gotten to it, try Spice Tree. Also a very nice blend from Compass Box!

13 years ago 0

HP12 commented

An enticing review @Victor. Along with your previous comments about this unique "whisky", my love of Grand Marnier and it being on my wish list, well, let's just say I caved and it's in the pipeline.

13 years ago 0

dbk commented

I've also been curious about Orangerie. It's nice to hear some words in support of it. Now to add it to the wishlist!

13 years ago 0

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