Compass Box Flaming Heart Limited Edition (2015)

Flaming heart

Recommended use: Serve neat

Rating: ★★★★★ Top pick

Recommendation: Buy it

Type: Scotch malt blend

Origin: Scotland

ABV: 48.9%

Compass Box Flaming Heart Limited Edition (2015) is a blend of malt whiskies including 38.5% 14 year old Caol Ila, 27.1% 30 year old Caol Ila, 24.1% 20 year old Clynelish and 10.3% seven year old blended malt from Clynelish, Teaninich and Dailuaine.

Nose:

Vanilla, caramels, waxy green apples, grape lip gloss and honeycomb add some sweetness to what is otherwise a very complex bouquet of old whisky with a beating heart of smoky Coal Ila malt; find a whole workman’s shop, textiles, freshly varnished wood and saw dust. Some of the peat is softened and refined from many years in oak, while the rest is younger and carries more vibrant maritime qualities. A fascinating medicinal note hits my nose mostly in the form of cough drops and menthol chest rub, with a minty burst; but as the whisky rests the smell of sweet and sour barbecue pork with dried orange zest and pineapple leaps out and stays.

Taste:

Like smoking the butt of a heaven sent but dry and flaky Cuban cigar, burning embers and ash carrying the taste of tar and spicy wood spark to life on the palate. There is the taste of a smoldering hot barbecue, and peat smoke gives way to dry apple cider. Oysters Kilpatrick seem to be pronounced, with spicy Worcestershire sauce and smoky bacon, and, a dollop of barbecue sauce.  With that taste of oyster is the faint bite of rock salt, perfect.  This beautiful whisky is spicy, sweet, smoky and downright delicious. Also find cinnamon, dried orange zest and mango skins.

Finish:

The finish is smoky with barbecue, dried cranberries, drying peat, dark chocolate, wood, roasted hazelnuts, lingering spice and a resurgence of that herbal menthol and minty note detected on the nose. 

Overall:

Buy it!  The Compass Box Flaming Heart Limited Edition (2015) is the kind of whisky we all dream about, but rarely have the opportunity to taste; it is basically a Frankenstein of a whisky with a number of different component parts which combine to electrify the palate with lots of smoke, spice, old wood, refined and aged peaty malt, younger peaty malt, herbs and mild medical notes. This very special whisky melds the finest qualities of young and old whisky to create a seasoned peat head’s fantasy, all designed and brought to life by Compass Box; all the bottle needs is two bolts on either side of its neck.

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