Compass Box was launched in 2000 by the American John Glaser, who was previously International Marketing Director at Johnnie Walker. To promote his whisky, John travelled through London visiting pubs and bars with samples and, in idiosyncratic style, handing out business cards billing himself as “John Glaser – Whisky Zealot”.
Compass Box’s modus operandi and strong work ethic is what sets them apart as an independent bottler and blender like no other. Compass Box buy individual casks and focus on creating a craftsman-like boutique product. None of their bottlings are chill-filtered, nor is any colouring added and are all married exclusively in American oak. This brings the characteristic sweetness to the whisky.
One of their unique expressions and a superb example of their methodology is Compass Box Hedonism. This is a marriage of between eight and fifteen different grain whiskies, most of which are over twenty years old and all are aged in first-fill American oak. Hedonism went on to be heralded as the World’s Best Grain Whisky at the 2008 World Whisky Awards. John Glaser was himself featured four times in Whisky Magazine as Innovator of the Year.