Compass Box Orchard House

Scotch Whisky Review #384: Compass Box Orchard House

Image Credit: /u/dustbunna, his review can be found here.

Distillery: Blend.

Bottler: Compass Box.

Region: Blend.

Blend Components:

  • 39% Linkwood 8 Year First Fill Bourbon Barrel
  • 29% Clynelish 8 Year First Fill Bourbon Barrel
  • 20% Benrinnes 8 Year First Fill Bourbon Barrel
  • 8% “Distillery near the town of Aberlour” 6 Year Revatted Oloroso Sherry-Seasoned Butt
  • 2% Caol Ila 8 Year
  • 2% Highland Malt Blend (Glen Moray, Balmenach, Tomatin) 10 Year Custom Heavy Toast French Oak Barrel

Age: NAS.

ABV: 46.0%.

Price: Sample courtesy of /u/dustbunna.

Color: 0.3, Pale Gold. Natural Color and Non-Chill Filtered.


Nose: It comes across much hotter than 46%. There’s a ton of acetone notes here and I can’t quite get past them.

Palate: There isn’t a ton going on here. It’s very, very light and easy to drink though. A bit of hay, a touch of malt and earth. That’s about it.

Finish: Quite short. Little more of the malt.


Conclusion: Compass Box has a knack for really showcasing how fantastic blends can be, making things that can be greater than the sum of its parts. At the price point this one is at, I didn’t expect something marvelous but I did hope to see them deliver something fun. Unfortunately, I think they’ve managed to give us something that is significantly less than the sum of it’s parts. It’s really easy to drink, but that’s the problem. This dram was virtually flavorless for me, to the point where I had a hard time writing tones because I couldn’t get any notes (and I had my palate checked, it was fine). There’s not a ton going on, which is a shame since Linkwood, Clynelish, and Benrinnes are some of my favorite distilleries. Oh well, can’t win them all.

Final Score: 65.


Scotch Whisky Review #384, Blended Malt Review #13, Whisky Network Review #538


Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky.
  • 85-89: Amazing, will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection (if feasible).
  • 80-84: Very Good, maybe only one minor nitpick about the whisky keeping it here.
  • 75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink.
  • 70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
  • Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.

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