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cowdery
06-13-2002, 07:09
I tend to keep an eye on any press releases and press reports about the parent companies of the various bourbon brands. I have noticed for sometime now that Jim Beam parent Fortune Brands describes its wine and spirits component thusly: "Major spirits and wine brands sold by units of Jim Beam Brands Worldwide, Inc. include Jim Beam and Knob Creek bourbons, DeKuyper cordials, The Dalmore single malt Scotch, Vox vodka and Geyser Peak and Canyon Road wines."

What's interesting about this is that Knob Creek shares the bourbon stage with Jim Beam itself, to the exclusion of all of the other bourbon brands Beam sells. Why? It certainly isn't their #2 best seller. Old Grand-Dad probably is secure in that position. It may be the second-most profitable. I suspect the other reason, and perhaps the most important one, is that Knob Creek has achieved a recognition and cachet out of proportion to its sales. Personally, I'm glad to see it. When a company like Fortune Brands, at the corporate level, puts a brand like Knob Creek on its list of star corporate assets, that's good for our side, i.e., good for people who want more premium bourbon at an affordable price. It's a kind of validation. Other makers, take note.

<A target="_blank" HREF=http://cowdery.home.netcom.com>--Chuck Cowdery</A>

**DONOTDELETE**
06-13-2002, 07:27
Bleeeeeeeee!http://www.straightbourbon.com/images/icons/laugh.gif The trend towards better bourbon is indeed heartening Chuck. I'm sure that Jerry Dalton (he's Jim Beam's Master Distiller for those that don't know) told me last year that Knob Creek sales were better than 100,000 cases. Do you have a more accurate figure? That's some pretty good sales for a 'small batch' bourbon.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

texascarl
06-13-2002, 18:29
A few weeks ago I stopped in to meet a couple of old buddies at a local pub. They're both beer drinkers, but I bought us all a glass of Knob Creek and we were sitting there discussing the taste when the local distributors rep stopped in the bar. He saw the Knob Creek bottle out, the 3 of us drinking bourbon, swirling it around, clinking ice and talking about bourbon, so he asked the bar-tender if we'd all ordered KC. When he found out we all had a glass of KC, he bought another round for all of us. "Just keep drinking that Knob Creek" he said.

So I will. I'm doing my part.

bobbyc
06-14-2002, 19:45
Damn , you talked me into it , I think I'll go pour one now.To TexasCarl , KnobCreek And all the rest . Smooth Whiskey Thanks man!

Bobby Cox

kitzg
06-18-2002, 06:30
Knob Creek has what we folks in Marketing call brand equity. First, the name itself is recognizable by many -- even those who don't regularly drink it. Second, it stands for quality.

KC has truly become a brand of distinction for Fortune Brands.

Thanks for bringing it up, Chuck.

Greg Kitzmiller

**DONOTDELETE**
06-18-2002, 07:03
Check this out -> The latest edition of the Kentucky Bourbon Circle newsleter has just come out and on page three they proclaim "Knob Creek has emerged as the No. 1 - selling ultra-premium bourbon in the world".

There is little wonder why: 1) The bourbon tastes great, 2) It's Beam Whiskey, and lastly number three a tremendous amount of money has been spent promoating Beam's bevy of 'small batch bourbons'.

But always remember this *** it was good whiskey first,*** and great whihskey after the marketers got hold of it.

I like Beam whiskey. Always have. I do love Knob Creek. In my lifetime it is the very best bourbon Beam has ever offered for sale.

Now if only I could get it at $19.99 like TexasCarl can.

Mmmm. Mmmm. Mmmm. Did I hear someone say Bleee!?

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

boone
06-18-2002, 07:08
Tom will be up in a little bit....I bet you will hear him say it! ;-)

Bettye Jo

MurphyDawg
06-18-2002, 08:29
[b]BLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE EEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

uhm, now all I need is a bottle of Knob Creek . . . . . . .

TomC

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1>Edited by Linn on Tue Jun 18 13:00:45 2002 (server time).</FONT></P>

cowdery
06-18-2002, 09:26
Okay, so Knob Creek is the breakout hit, but why? Linn has said why he likes it, but my question is a little different. Until recently, Beam advertised the Small Batch bourbons equally, so why did Knob Creek become the breakout hit instead of Booker's, Baker's or Basil Hayden (okay, never mind Basil Hayden. It just sucks.)?

<A target="_blank" HREF=http://cowdery.home.netcom.com>--Chuck Cowdery</A>

bourbonmed
06-18-2002, 09:38
Linn,

What's interesting about Knob Creek is that it has achieved "super premium" status without being priced at premium prices like Distillers Masterpiece, Hirsch, Van Winkle, Jefferson's, RHF or Hancock.

Just wait till the marketing boys figure out they can sell a Limited Edition Knob Creek--using slightly different age or proof. Betcha they are already working on a Gold Edition package.

Omar

bourbonmed
06-18-2002, 10:04
Chuck,

It may be a combination of factors. Bakers and Bookers are heavier, higher proofed and more expensive ($38-$52). Knob Creek, priced in low $20s, also features the most attractive packaging of the entire small batch line. Personally, I prefer the taste of Bakers -- but it's usually $40-42 in Miami.

You'd think JB would borrow a marketing page from Knob Creek and price the rest of the small batchers the same. But maybe doing so would cannibalize Knob Creek sales.

Omar

MurphyDawg
06-18-2002, 10:34
I don't know if it is like this everywhere, but in Central Ohio the only Beam small batch you can get is Knob Creek. . . And I have checked State Stores in 4 counties. Being the only member of their "Small batch line" that widely savailable around here HAS to help sales. The Economics of it (the fact that it is realitively cheap) cant hurt either.


TomC

tdelling
06-18-2002, 11:19
>But always remember this *** it was good whiskey first,*** and great whihskey
>after the marketers got hold of it.

I agree wholeheartedly. The phenomenon is just like movies and music... it takes
a good product plus good marketing to be a success. Marketers can bombard
the public with all kinds of advertizing, posturing, branding, image making, etc.,
but if the product is mediocre, then it will never be a real success.

Tim

ratcheer
06-18-2002, 18:42
I have only tried two of the four. Booker's is a bit too expensive and I have avoided Basil Hayden's based on many comments in these forums.

I don't much care for Baker's. It is too dry and "thin" tasting for me to enjoy. I still have a half bottle of it and I've been intending to re-sample it, this week. I haven't been able to convince myself to pour it, yet. Maybe tomorrow.

On the other hand, Knob Creek is still in my top five. It tastes like what bourbon (good bourbon) should taste like. It is rich, the age and the wood come through just right, and it fits my sweeter taste preference.

I am not surprised that KC is winning out. I have no knowledge of the facts, but I also wouldn't be surprised if it outsells the other three, combined.

Tim

ratcheer
06-18-2002, 18:44
Man, that is odd. I have to pay $32 for Knob Creek, but Baker's is just $32.25!

Tim

MurphyDawg
06-18-2002, 22:33
hey man,

be a pal and just delete the entry anyway, i was just screwin' around, didn't mean to bohter no onehttp://www.straightbourbon.com/images/icons/shocked.gif

i dont know how my settings changed, it never did that before


TomC

Bob
06-19-2002, 06:39
Chuck,
Knob Creek is the only one of the four that I've purchased, and that was completely due to the cost differences amongst the Small Batch Bourbons. Future purchases would keep me with KC because of it's great taste and great price!
Bob

Kauf
06-19-2002, 17:51
Linn,

At Sam's Club, here in Waukesha, a .75L of Knob Creek was $16.98. That price was too good to pass up, I picked up a bottle today.

Bob Kaufman

bobbyc
06-19-2002, 18:51
What a great price that should be getting close to cost wouldn't you think, lets hope not maybe it will go down some more.

Bobby Cox

Blackkeno
06-19-2002, 22:00
What about JD?

Blackkeno
06-19-2002, 22:10
This might sound like heresy, but I always have a bottle of Booker's on hand, but never have KC. Booker's to me is more distictive--straight from the cask bourbon. How can someone not love that? I'm very fond of KC, so why don't I have it too? Because, so many times I'm at a bar and they don't have any interesting /hard to find bourbons--but they have KC. "I'll have Knob Creek!" So the night is not a disappointment...

tdelling
06-20-2002, 10:47
>What about JD?

I'd thought about that a little as I was making my post.

JD would never make it as a new product today. They're
like Microsoft... they got in early, they got market share,
and among people who don't know any better (the majority),
they became THE brand name in the industry.

And the way I see it, JD is better than the competition... the
competition being Canadian Club, Cutty Sark, etc. I'll have
a Jack and Coke long before I drink a cheap Canadian, or
anything like Clan MacGregor.

Tim

cowdery
06-20-2002, 12:30
Jack Daniel's always had an original image. It doesn't seem like that today because so many brands have copied it after the fact. Jack was in a square bottle when everyone else was round. Jack bore a man's name when everyone else was using names like "Sunny Brook" and "Belle of Nelson." Jack had a simple black-and-white label when everyone else was using gaudy colors. Jack was willing to be down home when everybody else was trying to be downtown. Also, after the war (WWII) when fully aged bourbon was scarce, Jack refused to water down its brand as many others did (spinning off the brand name into blends and other products that could be made quickly) and instead turned the scarcity into a plus.

Yes, Jack has become ordinary to us because it is now a mainstream brand, but back then it was considered a premium product. All of today's "better" bourbons owe a debt to Jack Daniel's, Wild Turkey and Maker's Mark for making the concept of "premium" bourbon possible.

<A target="_blank" HREF=http://cowdery.home.netcom.com>--Chuck Cowdery</A>

Winslow
06-21-2002, 09:30
It's also interesting to note that the History Channel's "Hands on History" profiled the production of Bourbon at the Jim Beam Distillery. The program ended with the bottling of Knob Kreek (the spark of my interest). Beam could have chosen any of its brands to finish with and picked this one.

At my local supermarket Knob Creek is the only small batch Bourbon to be found. In fact, I bought their last bottle this week. The price: $29.95. I hope to find it cheaper on my upcoming "Indiana Run". Also interesting is that on another occasion that I bought a bottle at this store, the girl at the liquor counter said: "What is that stuff? I've seen it up there but no one buys it." (It was, indeed, dusty!) After I explained things to her she said that she had always assumed, because of the name, that it was some kind of cheapo booze nobody drank! That the name "Knob Creek" made her think of "Boones Farm"!

ratcheer
06-21-2002, 19:48
Hmmm. I poured my Baker's, last night, and it was...

good!

That was about my sixth tasting of it and it was the first time I really enjoyed it. I suppose my taste is changing. This time, it seemed full bodied and quite a bit sweeter than I remembered.

Maybe I'm losing touch with reality.

Tim

bobbyc
06-21-2002, 20:12
I like Bakers . Most days at Jim Beams Outpost if you go in the Beam house they pour drinks , Need to go when they have the Booker's out , anyway the day I went there it was Knob Creek or Baker's so I said Baker's . No use opening that autographed bottle. I thought it was terrific . Still do.

Bobby Cox

Winslow
06-21-2002, 23:25
Linn:
What exactly are the other small batch Beam products, Booker's, Baker's, and Basil Hayden all about? One post kinda slammed Basil Hayden. Do you like Beam rye?
Winslow

**DONOTDELETE**
06-21-2002, 23:57
Yes Winslow I do like Beam rye, but I like Beam's other rye; Old Overholt, better.
Due to all the Baker's banter in this thread I bumped up my tasting on Baker's.

The brains behind Beam's 'Small Batch Collection' is said to be Freddy Noe. To launch four 'new' brands at one time would be considered by most to be a very risky venture, but it worked! Knob Creek just happened to come out on top. If you haven't read my tasting on Knob Creek do yourself a favor and search for it in the Single Barrel/Small Batch topic board.

Booker's; Baker's, and Basil Hayden must be selling well enough as they are still being bottled, and marketed.

Pants Away!

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

**DONOTDELETE**
06-22-2002, 00:04
Ah-Ha Tim! Your 'depth perception' of bourbon has come into a sharper focus. As your bourbonic knowledge has increased so has your tasting ability. The payoff is the pleasure of increased enjoyment of more bourbons. The only downside is you have keep buying more and more bourbon.http://www.straightbourbon.com/images/icons/laugh.gif

Pants Away!http://www.straightbourbon.com/images/icons/cool.gif

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

cowdery
06-23-2002, 13:33
Reality is highly overrated.

<A target="_blank" HREF=http://cowdery.home.netcom.com>--Chuck Cowdery</A>

cowdery
06-23-2002, 13:46
Freddy is probably just the face they are putting to Small Batch, which was launched in 1988 or thereabouts, when Freddy wasn't even in the picture. Beam's whiskey-making decisions are made in Kentucky, but the marketing decisions are made in Chicago (Deerfield, actually).

Booker's was the original, introduced in 1985, or thereabouts, as a Christmas present for Beam company business associates. It was well enough received that they started to sell it. I remember having my first taste at a bar in Louisville in the fall of 1987. The other three followed soon thereafter. Each is a little different. Booker's is 121 to 127 proof, unfiltered and 6-8 years old. Baker's is 107 proof and 7 years old. Knob Creek is 100 proof and 9 years old. Basil Hayden's is 80 proof and 8 years old.

Booker's, Baker's and Knob Creek are standard Beam mash bill (some disagree with this, but I'm confident I'm right). BH is the Old Grand-Dad mash bill, which has a higher percentage of rye and a consequently lower percentage of corn.

The main gripe against BH is its low proof, which despite its age leaves it tasting pretty blah. They position it as light-bodied, a good bourbon for scotch drinkers.

<A target="_blank" HREF=http://cowdery.home.netcom.com>--Chuck Cowdery</A>

Winslow
06-25-2002, 10:14
Linn:
Found and just read your review of Knob Creek. I suppose I must see it your way since I enjoyed half a bottle's worth last
Sunday (little pig that I am!). What a way to spend a summer afternoon & evening. It was a hot one too. I also read your Kentucky Spirit review and do believe I'll get some...yes. I like WT 101 quite a bit. I think it has a very "buttery" finish and I can only imagine what Kentucky Spirit will be like.

Per Chucks reply, I think I'll stay away from Basil Hayden and try Booker's or Baker's for my next Beam brand. That low proof scares me. I tried a Wild Turkey 80 proof (small bottle) just for kicks. Not too good. I guess it would be OK with a mixer. Don't understand how the 101 proof actually seems smoother.

Regards,
Winslow

Pill_Man
06-25-2002, 12:06
>> Found and just read your review of Knob Creek. I suppose I must see it your way since I enjoyed half a bottle's worth last Sunday <<

After trying Knob Creek for the first time a few weeks ago, it easily knocked out Maker's Mark as my "house" Bourbon.

Also, shared a few glasses of Old Rip Van Winkle 15 years old with a friend, and found it to be a truley wonderful experience. I was a bit concerned as to the 107 proof, but it was as smooth as a baby's bottom. http://www.straightbourbon.com/images/icons/smile.gif


Doug...
Ain't Life Grand?! ~
____________________ ~
(___&lt;&lt;M&gt;&gt;____________}}}

**DONOTDELETE**
06-25-2002, 12:07
Only half a bottle, Winslow? Over an entire Sunday? You Sir are the very soul of moderation. I'm glad you find my tastings helpful and I hope you enjoy reading them every bit as much as I did writting them!

Pants Away!

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.