Compass Box

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Compass Box is a small producer, bottler and marketer of a range of blended Scotch whiskies. The company is headquartered in London, England. Compass Box Whisky was founded in 2000 by American entrepreneur John Glaser, a former marketing director at Johnnie Walker.[1] Their main product line, called the Signature Range, consists of whiskies named 'The Spice Tree', 'The Peat Monster', 'Oak Cross', 'Asyla' and 'Hedonism'. Outside the Signature Range, they produce a range of Blended Scotch whiskies called 'Great King Street', within which there are two products: 'Artist's Blend' (a light, fruity, spicy blend) and 'Glasgow Blend' (a fuller-bodied blend with notes of sherry and smoke made in the style historically favoured by Glaswegians). They have also released blends with a limited release, such as 'Hedonism Maximus', 'Flaming Heart', 'Optimism', 'Morpheus' and the Canto Cask series. Apart from whiskies, they also produce 'Orangerie', made from whisky infused with orange zest and spices. The blend 'The Spice Tree' is a different version from the original 2005 release of the whisky under the same name. The 'Eleuthera' blend has been discontinued.

Compass Box does not distil any of the whiskies used in its blends. The company's whisky makers select distillates from a number of existing Scotch whisky distilleries, specifically malts from Ardmore, Caol Ila, Clynelish, Dailuaine, Glen Elgin, Laphroaig and Teaninich and grain whiskies from Cameronbridge and Cambus. The selected whiskies are then blended together and the resulting blend is matured further.

In 2005 Compass Box released a new blended malt whisky called The Spice Tree in which the blend of single malt distillates had undergone a secondary partial maturation stage in casks containing additional, flat French oak inserts (also known as ‘inner staves’). The Scotch Whisky Association, a trade organisation that represents the Scotch whisky industry, felt that the use of such inner staves in the whisky maturation process was in contravention of the Scotch Whisky Regulations prevailing at the time and threatened legal action against Compass Box to halt the production of The Spice Tree.[2] In response, Compass Box altered the production process for subsequent releases of The Spice Tree wherein the secondary maturation stage takes place in casks containing toasted French oak heads instead of the flat oak inner staves.[2]

Selected Awards[edit]

  • 2011: The Spice Tree, Winner of 'Best Scotch New Brand', Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2011[3]
  • 2011: Flaming Heart, Winner of 'Scotch Whisky Blend of the Year', Malt Advocate Whisky Awards[4]
  • 2011: Flaming Heart (10th Anniversary bottling), Selected in Malt Advocate Whisky Awards 'Top Ten New Whiskies'[5]
  • 2010: Gregg Glass, Shortlisted for 'Young Whisky Ambassador of the Year Icon', Whisky Magazine's Icons of Whisky Awards[6]
  • 2010: The Peat Monster, Winner of 'Scotch Whisky Blend of the Year', Malt Advocate Whisky Awards[7]
  • 2009: Hedonism, Winner of 'World's Best Grain Whisky', World Whiskies Awards[8]
  • 2009: Hedonism, Category Winner of 'World's Best Blended Grain Whisky', World Whiskies Awards[8]
  • 2008: The Peat Monster, Category Winner of 'World's Best Scotch Blended Malt', World Whiskies Awards[8]
  • 2008: Hedonism, Winner of 'World's Best Grain Whisky', World Whiskies Awards[9]
  • 2008: Morpheus, Sub-Category Winner of 'Scotch Blended Malt no age', World Whiskies Awards[9]
  • 2007: Compass Box Whisky, Winner of 'Innovator of the Year', Whisky Magazine's Icons of Whisky Awards[10]


  1. ^ [1] Archived December 12, 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ Murray, Jim. Jim Murray's Whisky Bible 2011. Dram Good Books Ltd, 2010
  4. ^ "Whisky Advocate Blog". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  5. ^ "Whisky Advocate Blog". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  6. ^ "Icons of Whisky 2010". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  7. ^ "Whisky Advocate Blog". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  8. ^ a b c "World Whiskies Awards 2009". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  9. ^ a b "World Whiskies Awards 2008". Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  10. ^ "Icons of Whisky 2007". Retrieved 2013-08-26.