I love bourbon and enjoy bringing unique bourbon experiences to our guests.
There is nothing more unique than the Maker’s Mark private select program and I was privileged to visit the distillery in Loretto, Kentucky on March 15 to create my very own version of Maker’s.
Why is Maker’s Private Select unique?
Maker’s Mark goes to a lot of trouble to ensure that every barrel of their bourbon is the same. They rotate the barrels in their rickhouses so that each one ages similarly ensuring its contents are alike. This is why they don’t have a single barrel program. Since 1953 Maker’s produced exactly the same product that the founders Bill and Margie Samuels crafted.
Bill Samuels, Jr., the son of Bill and Margie, wanted to do something different. He wanted to release a new bourbon, which would be the first new bourbon released since his parents opened the doors of the distillery. In 2010 Bill Jr. did just that when he released Maker’s Mark 46. He enjoyed the process so much the Maker’s Private Select program was created to enable others to enjoy the same experience.
How did Bill Jr. create Maker’s 46?
He decided to focus on the wood the bourbon was aged in. At the base of Maker’s 46 is the classic Maker’s Mark (already fully aged). That traditional Maker’s is then aged longer with additional virgin wooden barrel staves added inside the barrel. Bill Jr. experimented with American & French oak, the degree to which the wood was toasted, and the cut or surface area of the wooden stave. It was “Stave Profile No. 46” that Bill Jr. chose in the end, hence the 46 designation.
How does the Private Select Process work?
After touring the distillery and learning the process used to produce Maker’s Mark bourbon, I was escorted to the private select tasting room in their limestone cellar. The task at hand was to select my own 10 wooden stave combination to insert into our very own barrel. Once those staves were added, that barrel would age for an additional 9 weeks in the limestone cellar before being bottled and shipped to Engrained.
Our private select is on its way and I am excited for you to try it. Order your bottle today and join me at the release party on Thursday, July 25th to pick up your bottle, enjoy some appetizers and hear more about the process and our formula.
Learn more about the private select process direct from Maker’s themselves.