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Archives for : June2016

Beam blew it with the Knob Creek 2001 release.

I don’t know if Beam Suntory handles the marketing for Knob Creek, or if an outside company does, but someone really blew it with this release.  Beam Suntory, who also distills and produces Booker’s, came out with 2 big releases this summer.  One was Booker’s Rye, a 6-8k bottle, one time run of a 13 year old cask strength rye.  Boasting a high retail price of $300, the rye has gotten favorable reviews and is still very sought after.  The other release was Knob Creek 2001, a 15 year, 100 proof expression of some older barrels of Knob.  Knob 2001 is also a one time release with 3 different batches, each with it’s own different flavor profile.

Truth be told, I’ve had Batch 1, and I really like it.  It’s got a nice finish from the extra age in the barrel and still has a nice spicy punch up front.  I have bottle 12,373 of Batch 1.  Ok, for Limited Edition, I guess that’s about right.  12-13k bottles.  Problem is, Beam released ALL THREE BATCHES at the same time.  Instead of waiting a year, 6 months, or some amount of finite time between batches, they decided to unleash all the bottles at once.  Brilliant.  I have seen up to bottle number 13k on Batch 3.  So that puts the total “limited edition” release at about 38k bottles.

This has to be one of the dumbest decisions I have seen in the bourbon world in awhile.  Why not wait for Batch 1 to settle around, get favorable reviews, and make Batch 2 more desirable?  Instead, this one will be sitting on shelves for years right next to Wild Turkey Diamond Edition.  And at $130-150 retail price, this isn’t something people are going to run out and buy up when they finish one of the batches.

Nope, Beam created a new shelf turd, and people will be questioning Knob products for a long time.  Nice work Beam, nice work.  At least you did Booker’s Rye correctly.

 

 

Top 10 dumb things overheard in the bourbon world.

1)  Keep hunting ya’ll, it’s still out there [posts picture of some nice score at a store].  No it isn’t.  You got lucky as hell and just need proper wording to show off your scores.  Just say “check out what I found today!”.  Everyone gets lucky at some point.  People who win the lottery don’t say, “I just won the lottery, go buy tickets and you will too!”  Just stop.

2)  I just bought this bottle at the store, anyone know anything about it?  Then why the hell did you buy the bottle if you knew nothing about it?  Did the fancy label get you?  Did the store owner tell you just how few bottles the entire state is getting?  Did you think you had just found a one of a kind bottle?  Come on, do your own damn research ahead of time.

3)  For trade: Elmer T. Lee, Old Weller Antique 107, and EH Taylor Single Barrel.  ISO: BTAC and Pappy.  Yay, you found your first set of allocated bottles.   Surely someone holding a Saz 18 or a Pappy 15 can’t find them either and is desperately seeking low end to middle tier allocated bottles that will always be produced.  Maybe you could throw in a Blood Oath for a Pappy 20 or something.  Bump this a few times, it should definitely happen.

4)  I drink everything I get [said to store owner].  Yes everyone goes through the phase in bourbon collecting where they do pretty much open everything they get.  That is until the store owner finally sells them a Pappy 20 or 23.  Then you realize how many bottles you can get for that 1 bottle, and you don’t open it.

5)  Looking for a nice bottle to buy for my [some family member]’s upcoming [even number] birthday, anyone help me out?  It’s one thing to find a nice birth year bottle on the secondary market for you or a loved one, it’s another to say this to every store in your city trying to get a current rare bottle.

6)  Can anyone tell me the stores around here that sell really allocated and hard to find bottles?  This one is the worst.  Yes, let me tell you where I have built up a relationship with years of purchasing so that you can walk in and smooth talk your way into a bottle that I wanted.  Find your own damn store.

7)  I heard from a guy that there are only 7 bottles of [some 6k+ release of a bourbon or rye] into this state.  You heard wrong.  Don’t believe anything a store owner tells you.  Unless you work for the distributor that can see exactly how many bottles arrived at the warehouse, then you are passing along BS info.

8)  Tater – At some point in time, a potato was used as a reference for people who buy bourbon or rye solely based on hype or marketing.  It later became ‘tater’.  Regardless of how it came to be, it’s overused and out of date.

9)  People are paying [secondary price] online for this bottle, so that’s why I have marked it up (says Store Owner).  Store owners aren’t immune here either, they also say stupid shit.  Stop justifying your retail price gouging.  People in Venezuela are paying insane prices for food, are grocery store owners marking up their prices here too?  No, and don’t think we aren’t calling out your shitty prices in a big group on Facebook.

10)  I only got 1 bottle (says Store Owner).  He got 3 bottles.  He kept 1, and he sold the other 2 to his buddies Jack and Diane.  Sorry you missed out, you probably will next time too.  There is always Blood Oath though!

First Impression of 2016 Four Roses Limited Edition Single Barrel

[Generic section where I describe stuff about Four Roses]

Four Roses is a distillery in Kentucky.  They make awesome bourbon.  Blah, blah, blah…

No wait, their bourbon is terrible.  Avoid it, especially the Limited Edition ones and the Private Store picks.  Go for Orphan Barrels.  Much better use of your money.

Ok yes, that was sarcastic.  Four Roses store picks to this day remain the best deal in the bourbon world.  For people really wanting to know more about Four Roses in general, see this review I did in 2014 (http://wp.me/p5n6MB-2w).

For the rest of you, carry on.

[Generic section where I describe how the bottle came to be]

Jim Rutledge was the Master Distiller of Four Roses for a really long time.  Something like 48 years.  He made a lot of bourbon.  He “retired” late last year and Brent Elliott was named new Master Distiller.  Brent worked for many years with Jim.

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It was announced a few months ago that Brent Elliott would be releasing a 2016 Limited Edition Single Barrel (there had been an LE SiB every year since 2007, but there was not one in 2015 due to shortages).  After much begging and pleading with about 25 different people, I was finally given a sample of it.  It lasted about 2 hours before I opened it and drank half of it.

[The reason you are here]

This year’s Single Barrel LE is a 14 year OESK.  I don’t know that I have ever had an OESK, but OBSK to this day remains my favorite recipe.  It’s possible I have had an OESK in a ‘tasting’, where usually the only tasting I remember is the first couple things I try and then usually Waffle House 3 hours later.

The nose smells to me, and feel free to call total BS on this, but it smells like banana cream pie.  No kidding.  It smells like a nice aged wheated bourbon to me, but there is no wheat at all.  Just 75% Corn, 20% Rye, and 5% Barley.  The age definitely softens it up.  Me likey.

At barrel proof (I think around 118), it is so easy to drink with no burn at all.  It’s low rye, so there isn’t as much spice, but it’s got just enough.  I definitely get the caramel and vanilla that I’m used to with OBSK, but man that finish lasts forever.  Honey is the only word I can think of, but damn is it nice.  I’m going to write the word damn until the finish ends.  Damn damn damn damn damn damn damn damn damn damn damn damn.  Sorry that would have been longer but my dog grabbed my sock and took off.  I just got back, I think the finish just ended.  So good.

To make sure I wasn’t wrong, I just finished the second half of the sample bottle I got.  It lasted less than 3 hours at my house.  100ml, down the hatch.

*editors note, I think the second half was even better.

I know the retail price went up a little on this bottle this year, but man I could drink this one every single night if I that was possible.  Surely that’s possible right?  I meant from a monetary standpoint, not so much the health standpoint.  Bourbon is zero carbs though, you know that right?

For now, I’ll settle on however many bottles I can find around town.  Definite winner, it’s delicious.

Wait, I mean its terrible, pass it over in stores.  K thx.  🙂