The Schtick: Maker’s Mark, one of the larger producers of bourbon in Kentucky, produces wheated bourbon that is sold both domestically and abroad. Until recent years, Maker’s only produced a small handful of products. In the last couple of years, though, products like Maker’s Mark 46 and Maker’s Mark Cask Strength have seen domestic releases. A major criticism of the brand, though, was the absence of a barrel selection program in favor of wax dipped limited editions. That has now changed. A barrel selection at Maker’s Mark is unique, though, in that you choose a combination of staves to mature in a barrel, and that barrel is bottled. This is different from almost any other barrel selection process on the market. For better or for worse, this creates a very different product than their core line of expressions. I’ve set out to try approximately a dozen of these various private selections, completely blind, to gather my thoughts on how their releases are shaking out.
This is day 8 of the series. There are 13 days total. Here are the previous days in case you missed them.
- Day 1, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, Mexi Cali Mocha Selection
- Day 2, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, Total Wine and More Selection
- Day 3, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, Crown 1.1 Selection
- Day 4, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, Liquor Barn #7 Selection
- Day 5, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, Westport Whiskey and Wine 10th Anniversary
- Day 6, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, No Mocha No Cry Selection
- Day 7, Maker’s Mark Private Selection, Big Red Liquors Selection
Distiller: Maker’s Mark
Bottler: Maker’s Mark
ABV: 55.1% ABV
Stave Code: 0 | 6 | 0 | 1 | 3
Nose: Nutty peanut brittle, PayDay candy bars. Nougat, toffee, creamy vanilla. Light cherry fruit, but not a ton.
Taste: Thin to medium mouth feel, very little heat. Caramel, honey, toffee and vanilla reign supreme here, with some faint clove and orange.
Finish: Short to medium in length, a bit of heat here. Oak, pepper, orange zest, caramel and vanilla
Overall: This was nice, but again just a bit too hot. The prominent dessert notes were again welcome, especially that rich nougat note.
Reveal: Hi-Time Liquors selection. I think this might actually be the first pick I’ve had from these guys despite them being a prolific retailer. I liked this, but the heat was a little hard to look past.
Thanks for reading!
1 | Disgusting | So bad I poured it out.
2 | Poor | I wouldn’t consume by choice.
3 | Bad | Multiple flaws.
4 | Sub-par | Not bad, but many things I’d rather have.
5 | Good | Good, just fine.
6 | Very Good | A cut above.
7 | Great | Well above average
8 | Excellent | Really quite exceptional.
9 | Incredible | An all time favorite
10 | Perfect | Perfect