Maker’s Mark is probably the best known wheater around. If you’re not familiar with that term, a wheater is a bourbon that’s made with wheat instead of rye in the mash bill which gives it a sweeter taste than most traditional bourbons that use rye (along with corn and malt). Legend has it that when the original owner of Maker’s Mark, T. William “Bill” Samuels Sr., was trying to come up with the mash bill for his bourbon he had 7 options he was considering. Since bourbon takes a minimum of 2 years to age he opted for making a loaf of bread with each of his 7 different options and the best tasting one is what became his whisky (they drop the e at Maker’s Mark).
Samuel’s wife Margie created the name, drew the label and came up with the wax dipping for the bottle giving Maker’s its signature look. Once can’t help but wonder what Maker’s would have become if Samuel’s was left to his own devices. Also, during the creation of his bourbon, Samuels supposedly gained additional assistance from the one and only Pappy Van Winkle himself who has the second most well known wheaters, though definitely the most coveted, named after him. All in all, it’s quite a storied bourbon with a taste to match the tale.
Maker’s Mark Review
Distiller: Maker’s Mark
That unforgettable Maker’s Mark bourbon spice hits first with waves of caramel, cinnamon, malt and vanilla cream pie coming in one after another.
Again that Maker’s Mark bourbon spice, caramel, vanilla, cherries and a hint of citrus. There is a slight nuttiness that resides in this whisky.
BALANCE BODY FEEL
Good balance with a medium body. Smooth and easy to drink neat or on the rocks with a nice warming sensation going down.
Long dry finish of oak, caramel and a hint of corn.
I like Maker’s Mark. It doesn’t have quite the depth and complex character that you can get with some bourbons, but it’s well balanced, delicious and easy to sip. Being the first bourbon I ever truly started sipping on a regular basis I’ve spent a lot of time with Maker’s over the years. During this time my palate has changed, I’ve had a much wider range of whiskies and so I don’t hold it nearly as high on the totem as I used to. However, I still think it’s a quality product that is well worth its price and works very well as a daily drinker.
Maker’s Mark: Empty Bottle Reflections (08-10-14 update)
Whelllp here we are. The last glass of this tasty little bottle. I know it seems a little weird to be doing this for such a small bottle, but I’ve killed more than my fair share of Maker’s bottles in my time so I feel like on some level it’s not the size of the bottle that matters, but the journey you (I) have been through in drinking it.
This being the first whiskey I truly sipped on it has a very special place in my personal pantheon of whiskeys. I’m a big fan of it and its older brother the Maker’s 46. Both are great whiskeys that I enjoy fully and, most importantly, are whiskeys that I enjoy sharing with my friends.
This standard offering is a stalwart in the whiskey world and it’s dependable in its quality from first sip to last. Sure there was that whole messy business about them considering dropping the proof for a bit, but that’s the past and what’s important is what’s happening right now. Which, at this moment is that I’m killing the last of this bottle and enjoying every sip.
There is no score change here, because like I said earlier. It’s a dependable whiskey and that means it stays much the same through the whole bottle. Unless it takes you 3 years to drink it and it’s been quietly oxidizing, then it might change… but that’s your fault not Maker’s.
So cheers to them, cheers to you and cheers to life. Another great whiskey down and it’s on to the next one!