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Maker's Mark

An entry point to bourbon, and a proper sipping whiskey.

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@bradleyReview by @bradley

28th Sep 2009


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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The bottle: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, no bottle age. This means that the barrels used to bottle are no younger than 4 years old. Maker's claims the average bottle is approximately 6 years of age.

Maker's is a Wheater bourbon, which means that the second grain used (after corn) is wheat instead of rye. This tends to produce sweet, smooth, sipping bourbons.

Maker's claims a, "small production" by using no more than 19 barrels per bottling, but remember those barrels can be of mixed age, chosen by the distiller, to maintain a consistent flavor.

The draw: There are other, cheaper products in the U.S. that are commonly called, "bourbon" or "whiskey", that do not meet the actual requirements of being called, "Bourbon Whiskey". Maker's was one of the first bourbons to mass distribute, while marketing itself to be among the, "elite" brands that fit the definition of Bourbon Whiskey.

Maker's is one of the quintessential, "starter" bourbons. Those curious about the world of bourbon often find this as the entry point, as it is widely distributed. This author has found a few bottles as far away as Northamptonshire, England.

The drink: The nose is primarily kerosene, wood smoke, and caramel. Initial taste has a medium burn, which smoothes out into a full flavor of molasses with a hint of vanilla. The finish is the same as the start, and the second drink is the same as the first.

Critics knock Maker's primarily for being too sweet, flat, and over produced. These points are hard to refute. Still, it is a good product. I would recommend this to anyone interested in bourbon, and regularly enjoy it with a few cubes of ice after dinner.

Neat: B- Two Cubes: B+ Water: F

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