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.