Next in our Compass Box quartet explorations was a true conversation starter… every element had something different to deliver.
- Nose – Did this whisky really start off with a faint whiff of eau du detergent?? Then apple juice, slightly sour… however the aromas were exceedingly shy… taking effort to tease out… A bit of talcum powder, then finally as it began to open up some light spice, coffee, vanilla custard, toffee
- Palate – Holy toledo! What a contrast. An absolutely awesome whisky… so smooth on the tongue almost soft initially then explodes into spicy sweetness… fruity, cracked black pepper, all in a velvety coating with a puff of smoke
- Finish – Deceptive… highly deceptive… as it is very long yet at a whisper not a roaring spice
There was no mistaking this is a complicated and contradictory whisky – a nose which is almost elusive in character initially. Then a palate that made an extraordinary arc from subtle and nuanced to needle sharp spice. Even the finish provoked a debate – some suggesting it was remarkable by its absence and equally strong opinions it was there if only one tuned in to its quiet frequency.
Well named and well constructed to be discordant yet harmonious too.
And what do the folks at Compass Box have to say?
We’d long been working on a blend of single malts that combines seemingly dissonant flavour profiles, but together creates something compelling. We landed on a recipe that elicited a surprising range of reactions and descriptions, each person taking away something different from the whisky.
Rather than try to settle on whose perceptions were ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, we were inspired by the phenomenological school of thought to consider how different people experience the same phenomenon.
Flavour Descriptors Aromas and flavours reminiscent of berry fruits, baked apples and hints of banana, with a delicate peaty-smokiness that follows and resonates in the long finish.
Recommendations This is an ideal whisky for sipping and contemplating on its own, or with a splash of water or an ice cube which will reveal subtle complexities.
BMC’s Compass Box Quartet:
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