Robert Samuels arrived in Kentucky in 1780. A third-generation Scotch-Irish emigrant, he went about making just enough bourbon whisky to keep himself and a few select friends very happy. The level of craftsmanship that Bill Samuels, Sr. started over 40 years ago is still practiced at Maker’s Mark Distillery today. When Bill Samuels, Sr. bought the 200-acre site in 1953, it was the Burks Spring Distillery that had begun operation in 1805. In 1980, the entire distillery was recognized by then-U.S. Secretary of the Interior Cecil Andress. He designated Maker’s Mark bourbon whisky Distillery a National Historic Landmark.
The defining smoothness is achieved, arguably, at the expense of some flavor because Maker’s Mark eschews rye in favor for wheat with which to season the palate. This is an accepted alternative way of producing bourbon but few distillers pursue it. Aroma with delightful strands of exotic fruit and honey. Fruit cake. Oak adds to feeling of class. The palate is lush, pleasingly deep and malty. A firm nuttiness adds extra oily, chewability to the toffee. The finish is drier than of old. Caramel toffee with the oak guarantees a bittersweet edge. An old faithful of a bourbon. Never lets you down and being from the wheaty school always shows good oak balance. Bouquet to die for.