2001 marks the year that Beam Master Distiller Booker Noe passed the Knob Creek torch to his son, Fred. So this limited edition Knob Creek was started by the father, finished by the son, and aged for 14 years, which is five years longer than the standard Knob Creek.
Knob Creek 2001 is offered in three batches, each 100 proof and accentuating distinct notes of the extra-aged bourbon. Batch one is higher in vanilla and caramel notes. Batch two has more oak influence and is more tannic. And batch three is halfway between the first two. We’ve got a bottle of the first batch.
Knob Creek 2001 pours deep amber in the glass with gold highlights. On the nose there’s vanilla, caramel, baking spices and oak, plus a bit of dusty leather. Pretty balanced so far. Taking a sip, the sweetness shows itself quickly and, this time, sports a noticeable honey element. The sweetness lingers alongside hints of warm cinnamon. Eventually that sweetness fades, and you’re left with a dry, grippy finish of oak and mild spice.
Tasty. The original Knob Creek is a solid go-to around here, and at 100 proof it’s always a good buy. Knob Creek 2001 brings a little something else to the table and is a somewhat richer all around experience. We’re not sure those extra years in barrel are worth the significant price hike, from a quality standpoint, but that’s more a reflection of how much we enjoy the flagship bottle. The 2001 expression is a fine bourbon, though, so if you’re a Knob Creek fan or want to purchase a special bottle as a gift, by all means, do that.
— 50% ABV
CE Rating: ★★★★