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Knob Creek Single Barrel vs Old Forester Single Barrel: Head to Head!

Discover the differences between Knob Creek Single Barrel vs Old Forester Single Barrel in this head to head comparison and decide which bourbon is better for You!

Knob Creek Single Barrel

NoseFruit, maple, caramel, vanilla, roasted nuts
PalateNuts, fruit, baking spice, vanilla, oak
FinishWarming, sweet and spicy, oak
Alcohol content120 proof (60% ABV)
How to drinkAdd water, rocks
Similar toFour Roses SB, Wild Turkey Rare Breed

Nose is sweet, rich in maple syrup, vanilla and a bit of alcohol.

Palate kicks off with a buttery body and good heat on the tongue. Flavor is mostly sweet, with hints of nuts, baking spice, vanilla and oak.

It comes with the roasted peanut note that you get in every whiskey crafted at the Jim Beam Distillery.

The finish is long, rich in cinnamon and vanilla with a bit of oak spice.

The Knob Creek Single Barrel is a high proof bourbon that does not drink as such, rewarding you with pleasing warmth along sweetness well balanced against oak char. 

It drinks nicely neat yet a few drops of water bring brown sugar while tuning down the oak spice. It has a nice lasting finish making an entirely satisfying dram.

The 120 proof can be intimidating for some but believe me that this is supremely drinkable. One or two drops of water are enough to tune it down making it easier to drink.

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

  • Aged for at least 9 years.
  • Bottled from single casks, hand-picked based on their final age, rack placement and other proprietary methods.
  • The mash bill is comprised of 75% corn, 13% rye, 12% malted barley.
  • Knob Creek is one of the many Jim Beam’s offsprings which in turns belongs to Beam Suntory from Japan.

Old Forester Single Barrel Barrel Strength

NoseBanana, vanilla, oak, banana, ethanol
PalateBanana, caramel, vanilla, brown sugar, oak char
FinishLong, cherry, cinnamon, spice, oak
Alcohol content130 proof (65% ABV)
How to drinkAdd water
Similar toOld Forester 1920, Four Roses Single Barrel

Nose is quite aromatic. It delivers a hit of banana, along cherry, vanilla, oak and a fair hit of ethanol.

On the palate, you get more of that banana note from the nose, followed by caramel, vanilla, brown sugar and oak char. Body is thick providing a creamy texture.

The finish is long and pleasantly warm, leaving an aftertaste of cherry, cinnamon, rye spice and a tad of oak bitterness that brings balance to the pour.

The Single Barrel is creamy, tasty, yet smooth for something bottled at barrel strength, meaning it was not diluted with water before bottling.

Overall, this is a very good bourbon, fairly warm but that does not drink as a barrel strength pour making a must-try for those who like bourbons full of character.

There are a few facts worth knowing about the Old Forester Single Barrel:

  • No age statement but must be aged for around 4 years.
  • Bottled at barrel strength (no water dilution).
  • Drawn from a single barrel.
  • Made from a mash bill comprised of 72% corn, 18% rye, 10% malted barley.
  • Old Forester was launched in 1870 by George Garvin Brown and named for Dr. William Forrester, who prescribed bourbon to his patients.

Knob Creek Single Barrel vs Old Forester Single Barrel: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

Knob Creek Single Barrel$53
Old Forester Single Barrel$88

Knob Creek Single Barrel vs Old Forester Single Barrel: Which is better?

The Old Forester is better than the Knob Creek by a nose

WhiskeyKnob Creek Single BarrelOld Forester Single Barrel
  • Yet I prefer the he Old Forester that drinks incredibly nicely, with very little warmth to it despite the high proof.
  • The only complaint is the price which seems a bit too high when compared with other single barrel releases.
  • The Knob Creek is very close to the Old Forester, although it comes somewhat short on the finish. But in terms of value this bourbon is a champ and one to consider.

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