Wood Science

Maker’s Mark’s New Bourbon Is Just the Right Amount of Weird


September 12, 2019 Drinks By

The newest addition to the Maker’s Mark bourbon family is for diehards.

Offered at cask strength (108 proof), Maker’s Mark RC6 is the brand’s staple wheated bourbon mashbill, matured in its standard barrels, but finished with a wood experiment. According to Maker’s Mark’s Director of the Private Select Program, “RC6” is a codename for a proprietary wood stave designed to inflect greater fruit sweetness into the final whiskey. About nine weeks before the barrels are fully mature, the treated staves — basically long, thin wood planks — are dropped into the whiskey barrels. The result is Maker’s Mark Cask Strength that tastes a little like apple pie.

The bottle is the first in the brand’s new Wood Finishing Series, the first-ever nationally distributed limited release Maker’s Mark has put out. It’s a natural extension from its Private Select wood stave finishing program, which allows private groups, liquor stores and restaurants to customize a barrel of bourbon by choosing which staves to finish it with, and Maker’s 46, which starts with barrel proof Maker’s Mark and finishes it with ten seared French oak staves.

Maker’s Mark RC6 will begin rolling out late September to limited markets with a suggested retail price of $60. Like its other expressions, the brand does not disclose an age statement.

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