Knob Creek Small Batch Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is a premium offering from Jim Beam, aged for 9 years. It gets its name from Abraham Lincoln’s childhood home in Kentucky. They modeled this whiskey to emulate pre-prohibition whiskey; before mass production became normal. And being aged longer than most bourbons, one can expect a sweeter, richer taste, as well as smoother experience. But age isn’t everything, and sometimes a distiller hits the mark and sometimes they don’t. Does Jim Beam hit the mark this time? Well, let’s find out!
To find out more about this whiskey as well as their other offerings, please visit their website: www.knobcreek.com. (NOTE: Photos shown are a 375mL bottle, price below indicates standard prices for 750mL bottle.)
AGE: 9 years
SERVED: Neat / Glencairn Glass
COLOR: Medium to deep Amber with Orange Highlights
Coats the glass well and then forms thick long legs. As you let it sit and the legs fade away, you are still left with frozen teardrops at the top of your swirl line.
NOSE: Vanilla, caramel, burned sugars, and real maple syrup lead the way. Cereals and cinnamon slide in. Then there is some dill pickle that peeks in along with hints of spices and pepper. There is also a very soft oak dancing around, mellowing the other notes the more you nose it.
PALATE: Smooth. Slight oily on the tongue. Caramel and vanilla lead the way. Then mid palate cinnamon, clove, spices, and some maple syrup come to play. Then you end with burned sugars, char, and a touch of bitter oak.
FINISH: Medium to long finish with parts lasting longer than others. For 100 Proof I would say this is pretty mild. There is a vanilla that lingers, and the oak and char seem to dominate mid finish. It starts out a bit dry, but as time goes on my mouth actually generates more moisture. I make note of this since it is very noticeable to me.
OVERVIEW: I can certainly understand why this is a popular bourbon. I enjoy it a lot and it is very easy to sip. I expected more oak, but was pleased that there was not more than was present. In all honesty, a tad less char would have been nice though; but it was not to the point that I consider it an issue. I am pleased that any bitter that was in the palate faded away nicely in the finish, leaving only a mild oak but no bitter. I would say Jim Beam hit the mark on this one. It is a good neat sipper and would be wonderful as a mixer. And I can say that the more you drink this, the more it grows on you. The price is also fair, though as always, if you can get it on the lower end of the spectrum do so. Heck, if it is on sale, consider getting a couple bottles. Cheers!