Whiskey Gift: Compass Box Sample Set (& the journey I had finding it!)

December 21, 2011 § 8 Comments

I just spent a full week checking out the whisky scene in the sunny city of Los Angeles, California.  On my last day, I was driving around like a crazy person (as you do in LA) trying to squeeze in a few last store visits.

Beautiful, eh?

Up until then, I had really only be focusing on specialty shops (K&L for example) and authentic whisky bars (hello, Seven Grand) but I found myself sitting in a parking lot in Beverly Hills staring at a somewhat dingy looking store that, for whatever reason, I felt I was being gravitationally pulled to enter.

Sigh.  Ok!  I hop out of the car and go into what I would describe at first look as being a pretty standard American liquor store.  Neon signs, branded posters, old linoleum floors complete with a faint smell of cat (or is the cat smell only in my memory?).

A quick overview of the room tells me the liquid gold that I’m looking for is in the center of the store (interesting … whiskies are usually along the sides or back walls).  Hmmm.  I keep walking.

At the start of the aisle, there is a cheap, locked display case that I’m quite sure was been held together with discretely placed duct tape.  Now, here’s what I didn’t expect to see in it:

1 beautifully displayed 750ml Baccarat crystal decanter holding non-other than the Louis XIII cognac for around $2500 (see earlier post about this spirit HERE)

1 box (on the bottom shelf, tucked off to the side) of a Compass Box 50ml Sample Gift Set.

Gasp. WHAT!?!  I have never seen this kind of set in the States before… ever. SOLD!

(c) 2011 TheWhiskyWoman.com --- Glencharin glass not included

This is the perfect way to familiarize oneself with a brand, style, region, etc.  I picked up a few sets like this from La Maison du Whisky in Paris back in July (see earlier post HERE, reviews of the sets I bought to be posted in 2012).

In this Compass Box set, it contains five 50ml tubes, one of each of the following:

-1 x Hedonism

-1x Peet Monster

-1x Spice Tree

-1x Oak Cross

-1x Asyla

I also really appreciate the pull out information card that is secured on the underside of the box lid.  This is beautifully done, clean, well organized and a perfect gift … for oneself or someone special!

(c) 2011 TheWhiskyWoman.com --- Glencharin glass not included, used only as a point of reference for sizing

Sadly, a quick google search produced only one place online with stock and that is a single sellers on eBay (click HERE) but I’m not even sure that’s legal and that guy is selling his box for $89.99 (compared to the $49 I paid at full retail).

IF you can find one – I encourage you to buy it.  It’s a great set.  I’ll definitely be asking my local store later today to see about getting a few in stock!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!

Lastly, here’s the information for the store from which I purchased this awesome set:

Vendome Wine & Spirits

9153 W Olympic Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90212

(310) 276-9463

 Hopefully they can ship to you!

1 ADJUSTMENT SINCE I FIRST PUBLISHED THIS POST:  I HAVE SINCE HEARD FROM COMPASS BOX AND THEY OFFER THIS SET FOR SALE IN THEIR ONLINE SHOP HERE: http://compassbox.specialitydrinks.com/

WITH SHIPPING TO THE USA (FROM THE UK) YOU CAN GET IT HOME FOR AROUND $64 USD.

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§ 8 Responses to Whiskey Gift: Compass Box Sample Set (& the journey I had finding it!)

  • G-LO says:

    Yo WW!

    I saw this set for sale at a liquor store in Marlton, NJ called WineWorks. It’s a very well laid out store (only a year or two old), and they have a respectable selection of pretty much everything. They had this set in a locked cabinet and I was very tempted to purchase it. But since Christmas was just around the corner, I decided to delay my purchase.

    I’ve had four of the five whiskies in this set before, and they are all quite impressive. If I happen to have some cash after the holidays, I may have to pick up a set for myself. Though it’s a bit expensive (I suspect the pretty packaging is what’s driving up the cost), it is much less expensive than buying a 750ML bottle of each. I do like variety afterall! All in the name of whisk(e)y research!

    Cheers!
    G-LO

    • Hey G-LO!
      Always love your comments! Thanks for taking the time to write.

      I agree, $50 for 250ml of whisky is a bit high (ok, really high, I just wasn’t thinking in terms of quantity when I bough it). However, I still think it’s a great value if one wants to really understand the line, especially if they’re trying to figure out which is their favorite Compass Box. Like you said, it’s much cheaper than buying all 5 full bottles. Too bad Kings Street wasn’t included – just to finish the line.

      I also received a tweet from Compass Box who offer the sets for sale in their online shop here: http://compassbox.specialitydrinks.com/
      They charge 9 pounds to ship to the US so the total comes to around $64 USD to get it home.

      And to quote you, “all in the name of whisk(e)y research” is RIGHT!
      It’s a tough life being a whisky blogger… 😉

      Thanks!
      WW

      • G-LO says:

        WW!

        It may be a bit spendy/pricey/OOC, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t buy it in a heartbeat! Just need to take inventory of whisky on hand and cash after Christmas. Gotta keep my booze spending in check lest I get my hand slapped by The Better Half. I give her crap about shoes/clothes/handbags (full disclosure: her purchases are less expensive than my whisky purchases on most occasions), so I guess it’s only fair that I show SOME restraint.

        As far as the Great King Street Artist’s Blend, I saw it at Total Wine in Cherry Hill this past Saturday and bought a bottle to give as a gift to one of my oldest friends. I was torn between that and the JW Double Black, but since we’ve been discussing Compass Box so much these days, I decided to go for it. It was a hair under $40, so I couldn’t resist. Will hopefully get to try it on Christmas Eve when he pops over my parent’s house in South Philly for the traditional Sicilian Style Fish-A-Palooza!

        Cheers!
        G-LO

  • G-LO says:

    Yo WW!

    Booze Update! I just picked up my very own set for $40! Soooo excited! Gonna take my time and enjoy them one by one over the next couple months.

    Cheers and Happy New Year!
    G-LO

    • Hey G-LO!
      That’s awesome!!! Mind sharing where you purchased your set? (Just in case others want to jump on this band wagon) 😉

      Happy New Year to you and the Booze Dancing crew too!
      Yay!
      -WW

      • G-LO says:

        I picked it up at a local liquor store called Wine Works in Marlton, NJ. They were selling it for $50 prior to the holidays. When I saw it for $40, I figured I better jump on it. Love the packaging! I’m sure I can find a use or two for the box once I “work” my way through the viles.

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