70cl / 45%
Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Best whiskey in the US some say.
Five years, seven years or eight years – they’re just numbers to us. At Maker’s Mark, we’ve never aged our whisky for any specified amount of time. Instead, our tasting panel, including our master distiller, tastes each batch no less than five times during the maturation process. It’s ready only when they say it’s ready. And we haven’t been wrong yet.
The unique bourbon taste of Maker’s Mark can actually be attributed to pure, iron-free limestone spring water. It comes from our one-and-only source of water – the beautiful 10-acre limestone spring-fed lake at the Maker’s Mark Distillery. Good stuff, clean stuff.
With a foundation of red winter wheat rather than traditional rye, we ensure that Maker’s Mark will be full on the palate, yet lack the hot coarseness of rye-based whiskies. This, along with naturally malted barley, and yellow corn, results in a distinctively full, yet mellow taste that hasn’t changed in over half a century.
Visitors often comment on how attractive our distinctive copper still pots are, but they’re workers, too. An important part of our double-distillation process, they remove impurities to create a more refined sipping whisky. This whole double-distillation thing may not be very efficient, but it sure makes for a better whisky.
Our cypress fermentation tanks are literally irreplaceable – with some of the planks more than 200 years old. Cypress was chosen for fermentation before modern stainless steel tanks were available. These old cypress tanks still work just fine, and they give our visitors a historically accurate sense of our fermenting process. And, of course, we’ve never liked whisky with a stainless steel aftertaste.
We use only charred white oak barrels to hold our whisky as it ages. Now, we may lose a bit of whisky due to evaporation and absorption during this process, but, rest assured, it’s worth it. Due to the charring of the oak, the natural sugars of the wood are released into the bourbon, enhancing the already wonderfully mellow taste of Maker’s Mark.
Just one of the many things we still do by hand here at the distillery, our method of barrel rotation is expensive, inefficient and a practice long ago abandoned by most distilleries. But, because each barrel is exposed to consistent temperatures throughout our warehouse, the premium taste of Maker’s Mark never varies from one bottle to the next. It’s just how we roll.
Bill Samuels Jr.
With seven generations of bourbon-making history in his blood, you'd think the top dog at Maker's Mark® would have had his sights set on taking over the family business from a very young age. But that wasn't the case with Bill. He wanted to be a basketball player, a rocket scientist and a lawyer. He inevitably became all three, playing basketball in high school, studying rocket science at Case Western Reserve University and earning a law degree from Vanderbilt University. After coming home to take a temporary job at the distillery, his true calling found him. He took the reins in 1980 and oversaw Maker's Mark's ascent from a struggling family distillery to a brand recognized worldwide for its unique flavour and premium appeal — all while maintaining the family tradition of making every drop of Maker's by hand. Not too bad for a "temporary" job.
Makers Mark Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whisky 70cl. Maker's Mark is one of the few brands to credit Mother Nature for such a unique bourbon taste. Using pure, iron-free limestone spring water exclusively, their source is a 10-acre limestone spring-fed lake at the Makers Mark Whisky distillery
It takes a pretty gutsy distiller to sell off his family assets, invent a new whisky recipe and start again from scratch. In 1953, after describing his family whisky as 'pedestrian', the founder of Maker's Mark - Bill Samuels Sr. did just that. By 1958, Samuels released his new whisky to an unsuspecting American public and a whole new bourbon category was born - Small Batch Bourbon, handmade in smaller quantities to preserve the quality and authenticity of the distillers product.
After the repeal of Prohibition in 1933, American distillers were hungry to get back in the liquor game. While their hands had been tied by the arms of the law they had watched Canadian whisky, tequila, rum and scotch flow over the US borders thanks to efficient smuggling operations and the actions of bootleggers and rum-runners. This urgency created a bit of a problem - in their haste to re-enter the market most distillers released under-aged and harshly flavoured bourbons - which struggled to recreate any love with the American consumer. The Samuels family whisky, T.W Samuels, was one such product.
In 1953 Bill decided to sell up and look for a new way to distill the family whisky. He purchased and rebuilt a distillery in the idealistically named Happy Hollow, which was located just outside Loretto, Kentucky. Bill's next step was to prove revolutionary: In a ceremonial display, he torched the centuries old family recipe in front of his family and set about crafting a new recipe for the family bourbon using, to begin with, a humble kitchen oven.
The cereal grain rye is often noted as the 'flavour grain' in bourbon. Under US law bourbon must be distilled from a minimum 51% corn, and traditionally the remainder of the mash bill was a combination of barley and rye. After baking a huge variety of bread from different grains to ascertain the flavour profile he was looking for in his new whisky, Bill settled on using soft red winter wheat in place of rye. He believed the softer and more gentle characteristics of wheat were going to make a fantastic bourbon - smooth, mild and gentle on the palate. In 1958, when the first batch was released to the market, he would be proved right.