WOW7 – Compass Box Orangerie

 

For this edition of Whispers of Whisk(e)y, I shall look at something a little different: a drink that is not quite a whisky, and, at the same time, not quite a whisky liqueur. I am talking about the Scotch whisky infusion by Compass Box: Orangerie. Compass Box specialise in making high-quality blended whiskies, often with unusual names such as Peat Monster (a particularly smoky one) and Spice Tree.

 

 

The sample bottle of Orangerie that I had – and I believe that this is the same for all Compass Box miniatures – is in the rather novel shape of a test tube. It certainly stands out and, pleasantly and despite my initial concerns, I found it a little easier to pour from than other miniatures.

Orangerie, as you may imagine, has a very strong note of orange on the nose; a bit like the scent of an orange crème in the midst of dark chocolate. This is accompanied by the warm, woody notes of the whisky; there is nothing harsh there.

When tasting the infusion, it’s immediately obvious that this is not a whisky liqueur: it’s just not sweet enough, despite the sweet nose. The flavours of the whisky seem a little more rounded than I had expected, and the warmth slowly works its way up your throat. I found that, by taking a deep breath following each sip, the movements of the air over my tongue really brought out the taste of oranges, along with an unanticipated, but fine finish of toasted biscuits or oatcakes. Delicious!

This is definitely a unique product and I would like to reassure anyone who may be concerned about overpowering orange flavours: this wasn’t a problem, in my opinion, as most of the citrus came from the nose and, in terms of flavour, the orange is quite subtle and merely seems to highlight a straight-forward, quality whisky. Whilst this may seem like a novelty to some (I, personally, disagree), I certainly consider it to be one worth trying. Will the future bring additional whisky infusions? Who knows, but I’d sure be happy to try them.

Compass Box Orangerie – Orange Scotch Whisky Infusion is available for around £30 (for 70cl) from The Whisky Exchange.

For other Whisk(e)y Liqueur Reviews, click here

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