While previously remaining quiet in the ever-popular Fall release season, Maker’s Mark decided to join into the fray in 2019, and join they did! The quote below is from the Maker’s Mark web site.
Finished with 10 very distinct wood staves (Stave Profile RC6), the Maker’s Mark® Wood Finishing Series 2019 Limited Release Bourbon was crafted to feature more pronounced fruit notes and a brighter finish while retaining the balance of baking spice and sweetness found in the original Maker’s Mark®.
While the first attempt at a limited-release product from an admittedly under-utilized brand on The Bourbon Finder bar sounded a little dodgy at first, we had to get our hands on a bottle to try.
Nose – Big, bold, and sweet. Right up front this stands out as an extremely unique profile from Maker’s Mark. Nothing about this suggests a pedestrian pour. A lightly toasted marshmallow that has been soaked in a combination of both honey and pancake syrup, then rolled through sweet dried fruits skyrockets from the glass. I wanted to smell this bourbon over and over.
Taste – A soft mouthfeel opens up the palate to a complex blend that varies between toasted wheat with berry jam, and a sweet waffle drizzled with honey and a slight bit of wood profile and dark spices blending together. The Finishing Staves render the exact wood indiscernible, but pleasant. This isn’t an oaky tasting pour, but a complex and sweet one that hides it’s proof well.
Finish – The finish falls off a little quicker than expected after such an intense nose. The lasting notes are a bit of baking spice and honey, and is very light, I’d go as far as to call it delicate.
The Bourbon Finder Grade: B+
Thoughts – What a pleasant surprise! To be totally transparent, we had low expectations, and they were surpassed in every way. This is a very good entry into the realm of limited releases, and Maker’s Mark has begun to flex it’s flavor profile muscle with RC6. While their name scheme could probably do with a little more adjusting, this is a product that’s absolutely worth a try. With a retail of under $60 it is a bit of stretch from Maker’s previous offerings (in terms of price), but this is not one you should miss out on.
Our grading system: As mentioned in our About Us page, we’re excited to share bourbon with our friends, family, and readers. There are enough critics, cynics, and curmudgeons in the whiskey world as it is. Our goal is to foster the bourbon community in a positive way by bringing fun and entertaining content whenever possible, and as such we decided early on that applying precise scores to whiskey was simply too serious for us. We use a simple grade school system to apply a grade to the whiskeys we review because it is indicative of the whiskey’s grade for us on that particular day. A grade of a “B” today may very well be a “B+” or even a “B-” on another day. Pour a bit and enjoy, these are the good old days of whiskey!
I got into bourbon for the flavor and experiences associated with it. As I found more bourbon I enjoyed, the need to dive deeper into the history, brands, and technical side of things converted me into a total bourbon geek.