View Full Version : Knob Creek or Woodford Reserve

03-17-2005, 20:57
Hello all! Long time no post.

Ok, my local Sam's Club has Knob Creek and Woodford Reserve. I've never tried either of these and I want to pick one up but I'm not sure which.

Any suggestions? I was leaning toward the Knob Creek because Jim Murray gives it 90 out of 100 in his Whiskey Bible 2004 book and says it has the best aroma from the JBB Small Batch selection.

I'm not sure which Woodford Reserve Sam's has - Distiller's Select 45.2%(90.4 proof), Four Grain 47.2%(94.3 proof), or Personal Selection 45.2%(90.4 proof). The price for the Woodford is around 25$

My favorite Bourbon is with a doubt Elijah Craig 12. Are Knob Creek or Woodford Reserve anything like EC12?

03-17-2005, 21:07
Regarding similarity to EC12 -- no! Neither KC or WR.
Check the batch number of the Woodford. Avoid anything that isn't either very low or over, say, Batch 100.

Personally, I'd get the Knob Creek anyway. Others will, undoubtedly, disagree. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif

03-18-2005, 03:03
I prefer the Knob Creek. But then again what do I know. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif

03-18-2005, 04:50
I'd go with the Knob Creek.

WR has something about it that doesn't do much for me. In fact, the only Brown-Forman product that really does anything for me lately is the Old Forester Birthday Bourbon.

03-18-2005, 05:22
I agree with you, Mike. The one time I tried Woodford Reserve it didn't impress me at all. There wasn't much too it. I really enjoy the Knob Creek.

03-18-2005, 07:25
Get both and enjoy. Both are great. The KC has a bolder, shorter taste.

03-18-2005, 07:43
It depends on your taste preferences. I find Knob Creek to be more full bodied than Woodford Reserve. As indicated above, there's been some inconsistency with the WR bottlings. IMHO WR at its best it's a lighter-bodied, flavorful pour with some decent complexity, but at it's worst it's thin and lacking.

03-18-2005, 08:23
I'm not sure which Woodford Reserve Sam's has - Distiller's Select 45.2%(90.4 proof), Four Grain 47.2%(94.3 proof), or Personal Selection 45.2%(90.4 proof).

The Four Grain is vaporware bourbon; it does not exist or has never been released. Jim Murray must have tasted a beta of product; which I don't think he should be releasing tasting notes on a product that has never been on a shelf for purchase.

03-18-2005, 09:26
It wasn't so long ago that I made choices between bourbons that I never had before. Soon you'll realize that its hopeless to force a decision because you're going to end up with both anyway.
Sad but true. I remember when having two bottles of the same type of liquor open was unusual. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/70358-devil.gif

03-18-2005, 09:42
My first bottling of WR (Lot 88) was very disappointing and I literally had to force myself to finish it off in order to justify trying a later batch. But try a batch above 100 I did and was much more satisfied with the taste but still not overwhelmed. Both are decent pours and by getting them at Sam's you are probably getting a decent price. And as Ed has said, you will probably end up trying both eventually so the question is actually which one first? I also would go with Knob Creek unless I wanted a prettier bottle for my bar.

03-18-2005, 10:01
I'm on the other side -- I prefer Woodford Reserve over Knob Creek. I certainly enjoy the KC, but would take the WR if I could only have one.

My tasting notes for WR say, "Spicy sugar cookies, vanilla, cinnamon, burnt orange. Carmelized fruit and candy. A spicy bourbon, with strong notes of charred tangerines."

03-18-2005, 10:14
Knob Creek!!

The WR is a very drinkable whiskey to sit down with at a meal or before as an appertife. It's very tame, smmoth and lite. But, the KC is a splendid after dinner drink or any other time. Like right now... Whoever is reading this, have a Knob Creek if you got it!

Th KC is one of my favorites. I have it in a 1.75L on the Knob Creek pour rack from the distillery. Great conversation piece and makes people that come to my home want to try it. Then they all love it. I'm trying to convert the world to bourbon one person at a time!! That's my evil plan! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/hot.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/70358-devil.gif Man, I got my work cut out for me, huh?

03-18-2005, 16:42
First, I like them both, a lot. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/drink.gif

Second, no, in my opinion neither of them are anything like Elijah Craig.

To me, Knob Creek is a he-man's bourbon, something to drink when camping or socked in at a woodsy lodge on a cold winter night. Powerful and full of old time bourbon flavor.

Woodford Reserve is more refined and sophisticated, softer and sweeter.

Get either one, you can't go wrong. But they are very different from each other and from Elijah Craig.


Hedmans Brorsa
03-19-2005, 04:11
It wasn't so long ago that I made choices between bourbons that I never had before. Soon you'll realize that its hopeless to force a decision because you're going to end up with both anyway

This will of course be your fate if you choose to hang around here in the future. A happy fate, one should add. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

As for my take on the WR vs KC question : I feel that KC is more of a winter whiskey while WR goes down easier when the climate is mild. This is not to say that KC lacks refinement or that WR is namby-pamby beginners bourbon.

03-22-2005, 23:37
Well, I picked up a bottle of Knob Creek. Unfortunately I could take only a small sip of it a few days ago. Had to get wisdom tooth yanked out today. So nothing for me until I'm off the medication next week.

I know what you’re going to say - bourbon IS the best medication. lol Ok, whisky might be good when you have to get a leg hacked off in the cowboy and Indian days. But I'll take modern day vikatan to sooth over the pain from a dozen shots in the gum.

Anyway, I did find the Knob Creek light tasting compared to my #1 drink EC12. I guess I'm an EC12 snob.

A question: how is one supposed to drink 100 proof whisky like Knob Creek? I always drink EC12 neat. I would never put ice in it (yuck) or water. But EC12 isn't 100 proof.

Would you suggest a few drops of water? And when you say drops, what exactly do you mean? Anything like drops that come out of a kitchen faucet after you turn the faucet off? Or when you say drops do you really mean a teaspoon of water?

Lets say I'm drinking two ounces of Knob Creek. How many drops of water to tame it a little but not water it down?

03-23-2005, 01:40
The formula for diluting whiskey (or anything) is (amount of whiskey) x ((bottle proof/target proof)-1) = amount of water to add. Therefore, if you want to reduce 100 proof Knob Creek to 94 proof, the proof of EC12, you add 1/2 ounce of water to two ounces of whiskey. Another way to do it would be four measures (say, teaspoons) of whiskey, plus one of water. The water should be at room temperature.

Obviously you can just eyeball it if you want to, but it is more than a few drops.

This is a good way to compare two whiskies of different proofs. Reduce the higher proof whiskey so it is the same as the lower proof one and you'll be comparing the differences in the whiskey, not in the proof.

03-23-2005, 03:39
Do you have access to either brand at a local bar? In my area, I've only seen Woodford reserve once on the top shelf of the bars I go to, but then I don't frequent that many bars. Knob Creek I have seen at a few places. A good steakhouse can sometimes yield treasures too, and is the perfect place to have a good bourbon. For around $5, you can get a shot and do some tasting instead of having to spring for the whole bottle. For me that's the best way to try the more common brands.

Myself, I'm partial to Woodford Reserve for it's smoothness and subtle flavors.

03-23-2005, 19:14
Drops mean dribbles -- as you said, like after the tap is closed.
I'd bet most of us would handle the 100 proof neat -- and you probably will, too, before long -- but I often did dribble two or three drops of water in a couple of ounces of 100-and-up pours at the beginning. Heck, at a cocktail party where you might consume long and often, half-and-half isn't discouraged. You'll find what YOU like best soon enough. Don't be afraid to experiment.