Thursday, February 25, 2010

Review: Maker's Mark Bourbon Whisky

Maker's Mark shouldn't need too much introduction - it's one of the most ubiquitous bourbons out there. You'd be hard pressed not to find its distinctive wax-sealed bottle at even the most modest bars. Despite its ubiquity, Makers isn't mass produced - the distillery prides itself on its handmade production and sour mash fermentation method (that is, starting each new fermentation using a portion of a prior batch). Does this translate to a superior product?

Maker's Mark has a notably rich aroma - a bit of alcohol bite, but with plenty of honey, corn, and maybe even a touch of mint. The flavor is considerably more mellow, with the corn mash being prominent, and notes of honey, cinnamon, and vanilla. Despite the smooth flavor, it does have a bit of a burn, probably due to its reasonably hefty 45% abv. The finish is woody and a bit bitter, a drawback to an otherwise very drinkable whisky (yes, no e here, due to the Scottish origin of the distillers).

Maker's Mark is pleasant but fairly unremarkable. It's fine to sip on its own, and good in most bourbon-based cocktails. There are plenty of better bourbons in or around its price range, but it's not a bad choice, particularly if you prefer a mellower flavor.

Price: $25

Value: 16/20
Overall Quality: 15/20

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