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Compass Box This Is Not A Luxury Whisky


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@markjedi1Review by @markjedi1

25th Aug 2016


Compass Box This Is Not A Luxury Whisky
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Ceci n'est pas une pipe, the famous artwork by Magritte, inspired John Glaser to go head-to-head with the trend of produces to market whisky more as a luxury good, status symbol and investment vehicle, instead of something to sip and enjoy. So he released this bottleā€¦ for 195 EUR. Not cheap, now is it? Having said that, this contains 19 years old Glen Ord, 30 years old Caol Ila and 40 years old grain whisky from both Girvan and Strathclyde. Allow me to point out that the Caol Ila is only 4% of the mix, while the Glen Ord is the packer with 80%. Again the SWA was put on the back foot when they saw Compass Box revealing the exact composition. But hey, at least you know what is in your glass, so what is not to like?

The nose holds the middle between leather, dried apricots, raisins and candied oranges on the one hand and is quite bourbonny on the other. The grain does not dominate, but offers rich banana, coconut and something buttery. Nice nose.

It is syrupy on the palate. Quite mout coating. Immediately I get a warm feeling of peppers, nutmeg and some peat, followed by deep dark notes of raisins and dried figes, marzipan and roasted hazelnuts. Bitter oranges, sweet malt and coconut milk. Lovely salty notes go hand in glove with the sweet caramel. Fine balance.

The finish is long with a bitter note and a salty uppercut at the death.

John Glaser shows again why he is called a whisky artist. But almost 200 EUR is a bit rich for my taste. I will have the Flaming Heart instead, which is equally good, but a lot more affordable. And there is a huge lie on the bottle. Or a misprint. This is a luxury whisky. Or would that be humor?

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