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Maker’s Mark Bourbon Review: A Tasting Adventure

thewhiskylady - 2023-04-27
Rum vs Whiskey
Uncle Nearest 1884 vs 1856
Maker's Mark Bourbon Review: A Tasting Adventure

As a bourbon enthusiast, I’ve always enjoyed exploring different brands and sharing my thoughts on them. Recently, I decided to revisit Maker’s Mark Bourbon, a popular and well-known choice among whiskey connoisseurs. It’s been quite some time since I last tasted this bourbon, and I was excited to see if my perception of it had changed over the years.

In my past experiences, Maker’s Mark was never a whiskey that left a strong impression on me, but considering its positive reviews and widespread popularity, I wanted to give it another chance. Priced reasonably and known for its versatility, this bourbon has become a favorite for many, thanks to its sweet and easy-to-sip nature. So, with an open mind, I dived back into the world of Maker’s Mark to see if my taste buds would be pleasantly surprised.

Maker’s Mark Bourbon Overview

As a fan of bourbon, I always enjoy learning about the different varieties and their unique characteristics. In this section, I’ll provide a brief overview of Maker’s Mark Bourbon, discussing its history and the price range you can expect to encounter when purchasing it.

Product History

Maker’s Mark is a wheated bourbon that has been around for quite some time. The company was founded by Bill Samuels, Sr., who wanted to create a bourbon that “won’t blow your ears off.” He intended to craft a more approachable and drinkable bourbon by replacing rye with red winter wheat in the mashbill. This results in a smoother, sweeter taste. Maker’s Mark is produced in batches of less than 1,000 gallons, which translates to around 19 barrels at a time. The iconic square-shaped bottle, adorned with the signature red wax, was inspired by the founder’s wife’s collection of cognac bottles.

Price Range

The price of Maker’s Mark Bourbon can vary depending on the specific expression and the location where you purchase it. For example, the standard Maker’s Mark expression is often found at a reasonable price, while the more premium expressions like the Maker’s Mark 46 may be slightly more expensive.

Here’s a breakdown of some typical price ranges for different Maker’s Mark expressions:

  • Maker’s Mark: $25-$35
  • Maker’s Mark 46: $40-$50
  • Maker’s Mark Cask Strength: $50-$60

Keep in mind these prices may vary by retailer, location, and availability. As a bourbon enthusiast, I find these prices to be quite reasonable for the quality and flavor profile that Maker’s Mark has to offer.

Tasting Notes


When I first opened the bottle of Maker’s Mark Bourbon, I was greeted with a delightful and inviting aroma. There were notes of caramel, vanilla, and baked blueberries, which added a touch of sweetness to the initial scent. Additionally, I could also detect a hint of oak and peppercorn that provided a subtle warmth to the overall aroma.


Upon tasting the bourbon, the rich and complex flavor profile did not disappoint. The initial taste brought forth a blend of maple sugar, caramel, and a subtle fruitiness. As I further savored the whiskey, I noticed that the sweetness was perfectly balanced with more earthy notes, like corn, nutmeg, and a touch of saltwater taffy.

The wheated bourbon profile gave the Maker’s Mark a smoother and more mellow flavor, which made it easy to enjoy. The oaky vanilla tones were also quite pronounced, adding another layer of complexity to the overall tasting experience.


Maker’s Mark offers a satisfying and lingering finish. The sweet and warm flavors gradually gave way to a gentle mix of oak and sweet smoke, combined with a touch of spicy peppercorn. This left me with a memorable taste and wanting to come back for more.


Based on my tasting experience, I would rate the Maker’s Mark Bourbon a solid 7.8/10. The combination of sweet and earthy flavors, the inviting and layered aroma, and the smooth, lingering finish come together to create an enjoyable and satisfying drinking experience.

Mixing and Pairing

Best Mixers

In my experience, Maker’s Mark bourbon works well with a variety of mixers. For a classic choice, I’d recommend using ginger ale, club soda, or cola. They complement the bourbon’s sweetness and spicy notes, creating a balanced and refreshing cocktail.

Cocktail Suggestions

Cocktail Suggestionsphoto source:

One of my favorite cocktails to make with Maker’s Mark bourbon is the Old Fashioned. It’s sweet, easy to sip, and versatile. To make an Old Fashioned, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 2 oz Maker’s Mark bourbon
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Orange or lemon peel, for garnish

Maker's Mark Hot Ciderphoto source:

Another excellent cocktail suggestion is the Maker’s Mark Hot Cider. It pairs perfectly with the bourbon’s warm and spicy notes, and apple cider’s natural sweetness and sourness. Here’s the recipe:

  • 1 1/2 oz Maker’s Mark bourbon
  • 4 oz hot apple cider
  • 1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick, for garnish

Food Pairings

When it comes to pairing food with Maker’s Mark bourbon, I find that dishes with a hint of sweetness or rich flavors work best. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Barbecue ribs: The bourbon’s sweet and spicy notes complement the rich, smoky flavor of the ribs.
  • Dark chocolate: The boldness of the chocolate enhances the bourbon’s warmth and complexity.
  • Roasted or grilled vegetables: The caramelized flavors of the vegetables bring out the bourbon’s sweetness and smoothness.

Feel free to experiment with your favorite foods and discover new pairings that work best for your palate.


After thoroughly tasting and analyzing Maker’s Mark Bourbon, I can confidently say that this is a solid choice for those who enjoy sweeter, easy-to-sip bourbons. Its flavor profile may not be incredibly deep or unique, but it offers a pleasant experience with a nice burst in the finish.

In terms of value, its price has increased over the years, but it still remains a reasonable option for those who appreciate a versatile bourbon that works well in cocktails, such as the classic Old Fashioned. While Maker’s Mark may not stand out in the ever-growing field of bourbons, it has a reliable quality that deserves a spot on your shelf.

For those who prefer a bit more spice, the Maker’s Mark 46, with its French oak finish, could be a more suitable choice. Nonetheless, Maker’s Mark is certainly worth a try for newcomers and seasoned bourbon drinkers alike. In the end, my personal experience with Maker’s Mark Bourbon has been positive, and I look forward to enjoying it in the future.

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