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Knob Creek 12 vs Elijah Craig Barrel Proof: Which Wins?

Discover the differences between Knob Creek 12 vs Elijah Craig Barrel Proof in this head to head comparison and decide which Bourbon is better for You!

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof

NoseOak, vanilla and caramel
PalateSpice, coconut, vanilla
FinishLong, spice, oak, caramel
Alcohol content130 proof (65% ABV)
How to drinkAdd water
Similar toToasted Barrel, Larceny Barrel Proof

This bourbon is uncut, meaning that no water was added before bottling, and unfiltered as a means to retain all of its flavors and provide a solid experience.

Nose is strong in oak, followed by vanilla, caramel and a bit of ethanol.

On the palate, the Barrel Proof feels full bodied, warm at first as you might expect from something bottled at 120 proof but not harsh.

There are spicy hints, along a coconut note followed by a touch of vanilla and brown sugar.

The finish is long and warms the chest nicely, mostly sweet, with a floral note and a tad of oak spice.

This is good stuff, the heat lingers obviously but the floral note lingers too with a good hit of brown sugar and a bit of tartness.

This bourbon is well rounded, with some bold flavors making it entirely satisfying.

Add a large ice cube if you feel too much warmth but as you let it develop it becomes incredibly good and enough to become the best Elijah Craig Bourbon.

There are a few facts worth knowing about the Elijah Craig Barrel Proof:

  • Aged for a minimum of 12 years.
  • Mash is comprised of 78% corn, 10% rye and 12% malted barley.
  • The first letter of each batch number shows which of that year’s releases the bottle was a part of. Beginning with “A,” the second digit determines the month the bottle was released, followed by the year.
  • Two time Best Small Batch Bourbon Double Gold medal winner at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

Knob Creek 12

NoseRoasted peanuts, caramel, oak, brown sugar
PalateOak spice, dark chocolate, peanuts, cherry
FinishCherry, chocolate, black pepper
Alcohol content100 proof (50% ABV)
How to drinkAdd water, rocks
Similar toKnob Creek Single Barrel, Knob Creek 9

The nose is sweet, with a nice roasted peanuts hint, followed by caramel, brown sugar and wood. On the palate, you don’t get as much sweetness as in the nose as you get slapped with oak spice at first.

As you let it develop you get rewarded with bitter chocolate, cherry, oak, and the signature peanut note of every single release crafted at the Jim Beam Distillery!

The finish is long, a bit drying, rich in oak, with hints of chocolate and cherry and a drizzle of black pepper on the tail.

The Knob Creek 12 drinks nicely although it has more oak spice than I would like.

If you have tasted the 9 YO you are gonna find many tasting notes in common but be aware that this one is way richer in oak due to the additional 3 year aging.

Best way of drinking the 12 YO is neat, adding water makes it a bit sweeter but brings more oak making it a bit overwhelming, thus adding a large ice ball is a better choice.

Not bad, but there are better bourbons within this brand such as the Single Barrel which is the best Knob Creek and something you should be looking at.

There are a few facts worth knowing about the Knob Creek 12:

  • Made from a mash bill comprised of 75% corn, 13% rye and 12% malted barley.
  • Originally released as a limited edition in the fall of 2019, but became a permanent addition to Knob Creek’s lineup in 2020.
  • Knob Creek takes its name from the water stream that ran through Abe Lincoln’s childhood farm.

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof vs Knob Creek 12: Price comparison

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof$86
Knob Creek 12$72

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof vs Knob Creek 12: Which is better?

The Barrel Proof is a much tastier bourbon

WhiskeyElijah Craig BPKnob Creek 12
  • The Knob Creek tastes pretty much like the regular Knob Creek but with more oak to it, making it a bit drier and a marginal upgrade at best… and much more expensive!
  • Elijah Craig Barrel Proof is a much deeper bourbon, uncut, unfiltered, providing a more flavorful experience; nicely balanced and packed with pleasing tasting notes.
  • Is not nearly as warm as the high proof suggests, but a dash of water will be enough to tame it making it more approachable.
  • The Barrel Proof is one bourbon well worth adding to the cabinet.