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Knob Creek Rye


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I tried the Knob Creek Rye and Ri1 rye side by side and I'm convinced they are the exact same juice. There is a proof difference, Ri1 is ?94 and KCR is 100. Both of them are good basic rye whiskeys; I just prefer Rittenhouse 100 more. In Texas, Beam experimented with pricing on Ri1; it was $19.99 for a long time and now at $24.99. This is much lower than elsewhere in US. The KCR is $33.

My guess is Beam decided that Ri1 sales were not good and decided instead to leverage the Knob Creek brand.

I'm going to a launch event for Knob Creek Rye in Houston on Oct. 1st. The theme is roaring 20's.

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Binny's in Lincoln Park has them side by side, though I didn't notice the price on r1. I was just surprised to see it.

Depending on their inventory, Beam may be happy to have both. I've made the same assumptions you have, but no one has announced the death of r1.

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I had my first taste of KCR at the All Star Sampler last week and thought it was decent, but not sure I'd pay what they're asking for it around Georgia. I think it was closer to $40 when I passed on it, and my recollection when I tasted it was that I'd prefer the Willett 4 yr over it at nearly the same price (or Russel's Reserve, which I think was in the mid-$30 range as well).

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I can see what you're saying in regards to the WT101 similarity in the mid-palate and finish. WT gives me more mint and ginger on the nose, and it's also sweeter. Knob gives me a bit more char, and that may be due to age? Both have the same mouthfeel of spice and weight. I can see putting them in the same camp, apart from LDI and DSP-354 Ritt. I would put Baby Saz in the same "biting" category.

And I'm glad you've gotten your hands on some Fleischmann's. That stuff is it's own animal. When I think of what it could be with higher proof...:bigeyes:

Also, I dig what you're saying about establishing some Rye house styles. It would be really welcome for us Rye lovers. And I can't wait to start comparing Ritt DSP-1! This is a good thing. Too bad Turkey is dropping the ball.

Hey WT, are you listening???

Visited the WT distillery a week ago and voiced disappointment at the loss of WTR 101. The staff suggested that they were rebuilding their stock of rye and that 101 "might" be coming back. If I were cynical, I "might" conclude that a) they were just trying to mollify a geezer or B) it "might" come back with a new and improved higher price. Meanwhile, I'm nursing the 1/2 bottle remaining and trying to get by on RRR, Bulleit, and Ritt.

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Bourbon Boiler

I tried KCR for the first time last week at the new Beam tasting room and enjoyed it quite a bit. I did find it similar to Turkey Rye. I specifically asked if it was the same as R1, and was told "very similar". I don't remember the exact words the hostess used, but it implied that R1 is dead. Of course, I doubt Beam would turn down orders if someone asked for it, particularly if it can be made from existing barrels.

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It came in to a local retailer a few weeks ago. I had finally gotten up the muster to shell out 40 clams, but at the last minute saw he had KC rye minis for sale. So I bought one of those--along with a fifth of Ritt bond wink.gif. Well, I'm glad I had the opportunity to try it cheaply at first, because I most definitely would have had some buyer's remorse. I'd be willing to get a second mini just for another go around, but I seriously doubt I would buy a full size unless it was at least $10 cheaper.

I found it to be curiously more like Beam bourbons and less like Beam yellow or, especially, Old Overholt. The nose was a bit thin--although I can't say I let it open up enough. The body was medium-light, most likely due to the "patiently aged" process--seemed about 4-6 yrs old. The finish, came through as hot and fleeting. What stood out most prominently was that the oiliness was there, as with the yellow label, but more pronounced in the way that standard KC (or other Beam juice) has fusel oil qualities. Not that that's a bad thing, it's just that I rather not have that in my ryes. There also was less fruitiness (berries or bubble gum) on the palate compared to Ritt or Saz, respectively.

Some speculation: I'm not sure what gives Beam products the fusel aspects--the yeast? I may be using fusel oil as an odd descriptor, but it's nose and mouthfeel remind me of gasoline. (Been awhile since I siphoned gas from a tank though tongue.gif). Their OGD seems to have some of this, but it definitely stands apart from white label or KC. OGD has a different yeast, no?

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Visited the WT distillery a week ago and voiced disappointment at the loss of WTR 101. The staff suggested that they were rebuilding their stock of rye and that 101 "might" be coming back. If I were cynical, I "might" conclude that a) they were just trying to mollify a geezer or B) it "might" come back with a new and improved higher price. Meanwhile, I'm nursing the 1/2 bottle remaining and trying to get by on RRR, Bulleit, and Ritt.
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I tried KCR for the first time last week at the new Beam tasting room and enjoyed it quite a bit. I did find it similar to Turkey Rye. I specifically asked if it was the same as R1, and was told "very similar". I don't remember the exact words the hostess used, but it implied that R1 is dead. Of course, I doubt Beam would turn down orders if someone asked for it, particularly if it can be made from existing barrels.

We also visited the new Beam tasting room. Really impressed by the high-tech concept of distributing tastes. On the upside, the "credit card" they issue for two samples lets you try what you like rather than what's on tap for the day. On the down side, the eensy-teensy samples provided by the machines is really not enough to form a rational judgment and you don't get a chance to schmooze with the guy who might be inclined to pour you a real drink. (The sample of KCR I had was so small I couldn't really compare it with WTR101 or anything else.) This may be good for Beam in terms of portion control but it seems less likely to attract new customers in the long run.

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Bourbon Boiler
We also visited the new Beam tasting room. Really impressed by the high-tech concept of distributing tastes. On the upside, the "credit card" they issue for two samples lets you try what you like rather than what's on tap for the day. On the down side, the eensy-teensy samples provided by the machines is really not enough to form a rational judgment and you don't get a chance to schmooze with the guy who might be inclined to pour you a real drink. (The sample of KCR I had was so small I couldn't really compare it with WTR101 or anything else.) This may be good for Beam in terms of portion control but it seems less likely to attract new customers in the long run.

I was wondering how the size compared. I'm sure Beam's official statement is that the machine accurately measures the legal amount to distribute as a free sample, just like their hosts/hostesses used to. However, in my previous trips, I did remember samples being a bit larger. I didn't know if it was my faulty memory or an actual downsizing.

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It's the price of success. Bourbon and bourbon tourism are so hot right now that everybody is buried with visitors. Technology is part of the solution. For that same reason, most are instituting modest charges to weed out the merely curious. Nobody likes to pay for something that used to be free, but what you're really paying for is a couple hundred extra people who aren't there.

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It's the price of success. Bourbon and bourbon tourism are so hot right now that everybody is buried with visitors. Technology is part of the solution. For that same reason, most are instituting modest charges to weed out the merely curious. Nobody likes to pay for something that used to be free, but what you're really paying for is a couple hundred extra people who aren't there.
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They'll get smart about the thing, maybe give you a free pass if you like them on Facebook.

It's an interesting thing about business, that sometimes great success can be as challenging as the lack thereof.

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  • 2 weeks later...
boneuphtoner

Just got to try this for the first time last week. Let me say that I'm in the minority here who still likes the old Ri1 rye (this was my first introduction to rye whiskey, so I'm sentimental about it), but I definitely preferred the Knob Creek. The increased depth of flavor was evident on the first sip. We did a tasting last weekend with my friend who introduced me to Ri1, and his conclusions matched my own. And we also agreed that we preferred Rittenhouse to both of them.

Oddly enough, here in Montgomery County MD, the Ri1 is $14 more expensive than the Knob Creek. Wonder how long it will take them to fix that? My experiences with Ri1 could not be more conflicting. In 4 bars in three different states, the samples I tried seemed to be the finest whiskey I've ever tried. Yet every bottle I've purchased have been underwhelming in comparison. I still like it, but the ones I've purchased seemed much more aggressive and less balanced. Anyone had a similar experience with this or other whiskeys?

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Restaurant man

I'm trying the knob rye for the first time and wanted to compare it to Ritt BIB. I would say the ritt is darker in color with more wood/soot aparrent, richer in body (higher corn). Knob was fruity/spice, cleaner and had a longer Finnish. So I mixed em 50/50... Very highly recommended. :cool: Where is gilman at? Could be the SB Rye blend...

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I tried the Knob Creek Rye and Ri1 rye side by side and I'm convinced they are the exact same juice. There is a proof difference, Ri1 is ?94 and KCR is 100. Both of them are good basic rye whiskeys; I just prefer Rittenhouse 100 more. In Texas, Beam experimented with pricing on Ri1; it was $19.99 for a long time and now at $24.99. This is much lower than elsewhere in US. The KCR is $33.....
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  • 1 month later...
bad_scientist

I finally got to try the Knob creek rye today. I might have missed it somewhere, so please forgive me if I didn't take it to heart if you said it, but it tastes a LOT like regular Knob Creek. The funky Beam yeast is making its presence known vigorously, the corny notes are up-front-and-personal, and the depth is pretty much little on spice and a lot on caramel and maple syrup. The biggest differences on my palate are that there is much more of a young wood influence in the rye, a bit less maple, and a sort of shallowness to it, like the more you swirl it around in your mouth, the less you get back. The additional spice due to the increased rye is minimal. I can tell the difference between the two, but they are cousins, much closer to each other than the rye is to other ryes.

I like Knob Creek, but I never would have bought this if I had read the simple observation that it's so similar. Maybe it's just me, but I tried it tonight with Pikesville Rye, HW 16, McKenzie Rye, BT White Dog Rye... various iterations of rye, and it just jumped out as being so obviously a Beam profile.

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I finally got to try the Knob creek rye today. I might have missed it somewhere, so please forgive me if I didn't take it to heart if you said it, but it tastes a LOT like regular Knob Creek. The funky Beam yeast is making its presence known vigorously, the corny notes are up-front-and-personal, and the depth is pretty much little on spice and a lot on caramel and maple syrup. The biggest differences on my palate are that there is much more of a young wood influence in the rye, a bit less maple, and a sort of shallowness to it, like the more you swirl it around in your mouth, the less you get back. The additional spice due to the increased rye is minimal. I can tell the difference between the two, but they are cousins, much closer to each other than the rye is to other ryes.

I like Knob Creek, but I never would have bought this if I had read the simple observation that it's so similar. Maybe it's just me, but I tried it tonight with Pikesville Rye, HW 16, McKenzie Rye, BT White Dog Rye... various iterations of rye, and it just jumped out as being so obviously a Beam profile.

i think that is absolutely spot on. i enjoyed it, but they are absolutely close cousins. i was hoping for just a touch more rye.

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