Compass Box Affinity is ‘first’ Calvados and Scotch blend

Apr 12, 2019by Melita Kiely

Whisky maker Compass Box has created the “world’s first” Scotch and Calvados blend, called Compass Box Affinity.

Calvados is an apple brandy from Normandy, France. To create Affinity, Domaine Christian Drouin Pays d’Auge XO Calvados was added to a selection of Scotch malt whiskies that had been first aged in French oak and Sherry casks, before being married with blended Scotch whisky and matured further in Sherry butts. The XO Calvados is said to bring flavours of apple and sweet fruits, as well as a “distinctive texture” to the blend, complementing the malt, vanilla and spice-like notes from the whisky. With an abv of 46%, only 6,028 bottles of Affinity have been released globally, priced at RRP £100 (US$150). John Glaser, Compass Box whisky maker, said: “We’ve been blending Calvados with Scotch whisky at home and in our blending room for years, simply because we love the way the flavours complement one another. “Scotland and Normandy have a number of things in common, especially their cool, maritime climates. “Apples and barley have a long, shared history of usage together, particularly in baking. Spirits-wise, it isn’t widely known that Calvados producers often double-distil in pot stills, just like their Scottish cousins.” In February, Compass Box unveiled Tobias & the Angel, a limited edition whisky inspired by a 15th-century painting that was made from liquid sourced from the Clynelish and Caol Ila distilleries. At the end of 2018, the bottler created a one-year-old “sacrificial spirit” containing whisky from the Glenlossie, Glen Elgin and Linkwood distilleries.