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>