Whisky Review – Compass Box Great King Street Experimentals (TR-06 & 00-V4)

Another day, another Compass Box blend. Oh wait, actually TWO Compass Box blends – the Great King Street experimental blends.

Following the very successful release of their Great King Street Artist’s Blend in 2011, Compass Box have been experimenting with two new blends and they decided to let the public decide which one will stay and which is a goner:

  • 00-V4 – a lightly sherried option, made up of 28% Lowland Grain and 72% Malt from the Highlands and Speyside with a small percentage of peated Islay.
  • TR-06 – a smoky version, made up of 33% Lowland Grain and 67% Malt from Islay, Highlands and Speyside, of which half comes from Clynelish.

So if you force me to choose only one of those two, which one?

Compass Box Great King St TR-06 (50cl, 43%, 3,805 bottles, buy here for £29.45)

gks-tr06Nose: Some earthy peat, at first without smoke, then some ashes smoke but very gentle and not overpowering. Salty sea breeze, cereal/malt, sweetness (fruits) – not very complex but very nice nose which I can sniff for long time.

Palate: Peat of the ashy kind but still mild and showing some earthy flavors too, salty but much less pronounced then on nose, some honeyed cereals and fruity layer – more complex and better then the nose.

Finish: Medium length, peat and cereals with fruity edge.

Compass Box Great King St 00-V4 (50cl, 43%, 3,439 bottles, buy here for £29.45)

gks-00v4Nose: Definitely sherry influence – plums, berries, citrus (mostly oranges), sweet candies. and some honey & vanilla in the background. As with others compass box whiskies – again a very gentle and harmonic nose.

Palate: Smooth, candied oranges with soft chili spiciness, toffee, some oak wood – real nice.

Finish: Medium length, starts with fizzy sweet candies then transforms into candied oranges and gentle oak wood with some wood spices.

Conclusion: Compass Box did great job with those two blends and it’s really hard to choose between those two as they provide different profile which fits different mood and taste. But if you have to force my hand here and make me select one of them by gun threat, I’ll go for 00-V4 but only by a hair – the nose here is a bit better and complex then the TR-06 and that what gives it the edge (but only barely). Slainte!

(Official sample from the Compass Box Whisky Company

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