When I recently dropped the $150+ on the 2001 LE KNOB CREEK 15 year, everyone railed against me and called me a stupid dipshit. The general consensus was that you could spend a third of that and drink a “superior” product with the single barrel/age stated single barrel KC.
To be clear, I am a stupid dipshit. The rate of diminishing returns is funny in beer and uproariously hilarious in bourbon. That being said, the tasty SBKC is not in the same realm as the 2001 LE, they inhabit two different frenetic electron orbits.
The 9 year is a bold Shasta analogue to, in my estimation, superior iterations set forth by the Bookers pedigree. You can option an accord to be damn near Acura level, but at a certain point the NSX will just compel far more downstairs flooding.
The 9 year sbKC has a comparatively thin Darjeeling tea and Semtex explosion of fusel shop class and cinnamon. Varnish is applied and it feels brash and without that syrupy balance from the likes of Noes secret or Oven buster. It is oaky and has a cocoa dust to it. For the money I would be hard pressed to recommend a better bottle in the $45 realm, aside from the fantastic SAOS 10 year. The deals upon deals make this a bcbs of sorts, sans infection.
The 2001 LE KC is another beast altogether and drinks closer to ec18 and eagle rare 17. You get this lingering smooth profile that exhibits zero sharp edges and presents leather and cloves and chamomile tea, there’s a touch of butterscotch to this water drag that pulls out like a latter say Saint, staying in deep for the long haul and bearing the consequences. Already these hyper priced offerings are clearing $250 in secondary so is it worth the type of 4rsmble or THH pedigree that is must fight against? Now that’s a whole different story, while I love love this bourbon, it doesn’t hold its own in sheer brilliance or depth against the b25 segment. To be Frankie’s bourbons can justify the mid $100 price tag, but if you want to pay 300% more for a 100% increase in quality, who could blame you. The returns are there but this is for a different consumer profile altogether.
Buy it? I don’t know, I don’t feel like prong over your w2s and organizing your finances. It’s really fucking good, so act accordingly, or don’t. There’s plenty of maladjusted dumb fucks with finances in disarray who sip $150 bourbon on the reg. Suffice it to say, the 2001LE is a serious serious improvement upon the KCsb and even the best bookers one offs. And it fucking should be.