Compass Box

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Coordinates: 51°29′35.6″N 0°16′44.2″W / 51.493222°N 0.278944°W / 51.493222; -0.278944

Compass Box is a 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 rich, round, fruity blend) and 'Glasgow Blend' (a bold, smoky, sherried whisky made in the style historically favoured by Glaswegians). They have also released several Limited Edition releases, 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 company's whiskymakers select distillates from a number of existing Scotch whisky distilleries, with the selected whiskies then being blended together and the resulting blend matured further.

Controversy and Innovation

In 2005 Compass Box released a new Blended Malt Scotch 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]

More recently, in 2015 Compass Box again disagreed with The Scotch Whisky Association when it attempted to release complete information about every component whisky used in its blends - a step which the Scotch Whisky Association claimed was prohibited by both EU and UK laws. In response, Compass Box launched a 'Scotch Whisky Transparency' campaign to encourage greater transparency within the world of Scotch with other Scotch whisky producers - notably Bruichladdich - subsequently joining them in sharing full age component information about one or more of their blends.

Selected Awards[edit]

  • 2016: Flaming Heart, Scotch Vatted Malt of the Year, Jim Murray's Whisky Bible
  • 2015: The Spice Tree, Best Blended Malt Scotch Whisky, San Francisco World Spirits Championship
  • 2014: Delilah's, Most Innovative New Whisky of 2014, The Drammie Awards
  • 2014: The Peat Monster, Scotch Blended Malt of the Year, World Whiskies Awards
  • 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.