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For the first time in ages, Maggie and I (and her friend) took advantage of snowmaggeddon and went tobogganing! She got a GT Snowracer for Christmas and she plowed down those hills like a demon. (Her friend fell off on her first descent, though, and conked her head - she gave up after that!!) Of course, we went for hot chocolate after and, while that warmed up the kiddies enough, Dad wanted something a little....hmmmm. I don't know......hmmmmm....something even warmer......
Knob Creek was launched by Jim Beam in 1992 as part of their Small Batch Bourbon Collection. It is made with the same high-rye formula as Basil Hayden's, as well as Old Grand-Dad.
The colour is a dark copper (with a tiny piece of wood floating in it! Love it!) On the nose there's a strong interplay of corn and rye, with black liquorice, salted caramel, baking spices and overripe strawberries. Buckets of vanilla, or course - very creme brûlée. Roasted almonds. With time you get damp humidor. Deep, rich, fantastic. I would avoid water, it just seems to tame everything without adding any complexity to the nose.
Quite mouth-drying to start (then salivating!), the palate features burnt caramel, pencil shavings and a mix of berries and dried fruits. Dark cherries as well. Cinnamon. Huge wood influence, and big rye spice. Water softens everything (which was disappointing) but it does bring out the sweet barley.
The finish is oaky, with more cigar ash, rum notes and lip-smacking buttery corn. This is a beautiful bourbon, one of my go-tos and probably my favourite of the Beam Small Batch Collection. Big and bruising, but also complex with lots of subtleties. With it being -20C outside, this does really warm the cockles of me heart.