Forget NAS, the new thing is NIS (no info statement). With their latest limited edition Phenomenology Compass Box are doing the exact opposite of what they have been fighting for: not giving any information at all, not even tasting notes. Encouraging people to experience this whisky without preconceptions is a good thing, but I’m not sure this concept is all that different from other blend(ed malt)s on the market?
Apparently it is made with 5 components, one of which accounts for 72% of the total liquid. Another one brings in 24.5% so it’s basically a recipe that revolves around one or two ingredients.
Compass Box Phenomenology
(46%, OB 2017, 7908 btl.)
Nose: clearly reminiscent of the mid 90’s Clynelish profile. Fresh melons, red apples, peaches and some lemon / lime. Malty notes. Warm vanilla cake with icing. Subtle wax and damp oak. Just a hint of marshmallow / marzipan. Nicely warm and fruity, simply very good.
Mouth: quite rich and creamy, in the same style. Sweets fruits (peaches, apples), balanced by zesty notes (lemon, grapefruit) and a touch of aniseed. Maybe a hint of pineapple. The same waxiness – again there’s clearly Clynelish in here. Fades on red apple peelings with a faint grassy / salty edge.
Finish: long, with some drying grassy notes and
It’s really good – I like this style and whatever the other components may be, they support each other. On the other hand I feel it’s not much of a ‘creation’ this time: you can get similar and equally impressive Clynelish for much less, sometimes half the price. What’s the point in buying it as a blended malt? Available from Master of Malt and The Whisky Exchange among others.