Maker’s Mark® introduces Maker’s Mark Private Select™ Barrel program

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Maker’s Mark® introduces Maker’s Mark Private Select™ Barrel program

Loretto, KY (October 6, 2015) – Maker’s Mark® is bringing real innovation to the bourbon industry with a first-of-its-kind barrel program, Maker’s Mark Private Select™. The new experience will allow retail customers to “make their own Maker’s™” by finishing fully-matured cask strength Maker’s Mark® Bourbon in a single barrel made up of their custom selection of oak staves. The program will kick off in limited release in November 2015, with bottled product available for sale by retail participants beginning March 2016.

Through the Maker’s Mark Private Select™ Experience, participants will have the opportunity to spend an immersive and educational day at the historic Maker’s Mark Distillery in Loretto, KY, where they will roll up their sleeves and mirror the process used by Chairman Emeritus Bill Samuels, Jr. when he created Maker’s 46® in 2010.

“This innovative process of creating a personal expression of Maker’s Mark® allows the customer to create a bourbon that wanders in some intriguing ways from our traditional taste profile, while still being distinctively Maker’s Mark®,” stated COO Maker’s Mark Distillery, Rob Samuels. “We’ve never before given anyone this kind of access or opportunity to create their favorite version of Maker’s™, but we’re excited to see what folks come up with and how they like to make their Maker’s™ when given the chance.”

As with Maker’s 46®, Maker’s Mark Private Select™ will start with fully-matured Maker’s Mark® straight out of the barrel. Participants will receive an in-depth immersion that illustrates the essential role that wood plays in the taste of bourbon, and will select their preferred combination of five types of wood staves with which to finish their custom Maker’s™ expression. This collection of oak staves – each accentuating different flavors found in fully-matured Maker’s Mark® – includes Baked American Pure 2, Seared French Cuvee, Maker’s 46®, Roasted French Mocha, and Toasted French Spice. With 1,001 possible stave combinations, participants can create a customized finish and taste profile that is uniquely their own.

After aging for nine additional weeks in a single barrel with the participants’ custom stave combination, the Maker’s Mark Private Select™ bourbon will be bottled, corked and dipped at cask strength with details such as proof and stave combinations handwritten on the label.

Maker’s Mark Private Select™ Program will be available to Kentucky and Illinois based retailers in its first year and will be expanded to additional markets in 2016.

About Maker’s Mark® Bourbon

In 1954, at a small Victorian distillery in Loretto, Kentucky, Bill Samuels, Sr., created one of the finest Kentucky Bourbons. He decided to make his whisky in small-batches of 19 barrels, developed a proprietary barrel char to enhance the softness and sweetness of his whisky, and then rotated each barrel by hand to ensure exposure to consistent temperatures throughout the warehouse, and, ultimately, he aged each barrel to taste. Today, Maker’s Mark® makes its bourbon the same way its founder, Bill Samuels, Sr., did over 60 years ago, in small batches by craftsmen who hand-dip each bottle.

Maker’s Mark® Bourbon (45% alc./vol.), Maker’s 46® (47% alc./vol.) and Maker’s Mark® Cask Strength™ Bourbon Whisky, (54%–57% alc./vol.) are distilled, aged and bottled by the Maker’s Mark Distillery, Inc., in Loretto, Kentucky. In 1980, the distillery was designated a National Historic Landmark, becoming the first distillery in America to be so recognized, and has also been decreed as the "world’s oldest operating bourbon whisky distillery” by Guinness World Records®. The Maker’s Mark Distillery is one of the Commonwealth of Kentucky’s most popular tourist destinations, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors annually. For more information, please visit the Maker’s Mark® website (


Maker's Mark®, Maker’s Mark® Cask Strength and Maker's 46® Bourbon Whisky, 45-57% Alc./Vol. ©2015 Maker's Mark Distillery, Inc., Loretto, KY.

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