Maker’s Mark has announced Maker’s Mark Cellar Aged Bourbon, a new, annual, global limited-release expression.
Containing a blend of 11- and 12-year-old bourbon, Maker’s Mark Cellar Aged delivers the distillery’s oldest release.
Since its founding in 1953, Maker’s Mark has aged its whisky to taste, not time. “For more than 65 years, aging our whisky for a decade-plus wasn’t something we did,” says Rob Samuels, Eight Generation Whisky Maker and grandson of the founders at Maker’s Mark. “It’s not that we didn’t believe in it; we simply hadn’t found a way to do it that didn’t compromise on our taste vision — until now.”
“Cellar Aged embodies an older whisky that’s distinctly Maker’s Mark,” he adds. “One rooted in challenging convention, delivering new flavor experiences from the environment that surrounds us, and building on a taste vision that’s been generations in the making.”
To become Maker’s Mark Cellar Aged, barrels of the distillery’s classic distillate first spend approximately six years aging in traditional bourbon warehouses. Barrels then move into the distillery’s proprietary whisky cellar for an additional five to six years of aging, before being blended to taste and bottled. Built into the natural limestone shelf of the Kentucky hills, the cellar’s cool environment slows down the tannic impact that occurs during maturation, the company says, while allowing the bourbon to develop a “deeper, darker flavor.”
Cellar Aged will be an annual, limited release available in specific markets around the world. The maturation approach of “Cellar Aged” will remain consistent every year, but the specific blend of aged bourbon will vary based on which barrels are ready, by taste.
The inaugural release of Cellar Aged is a marriage of 12-year-old and 11-year-old whisky — 87% and 13%, respectively — bottled at cask strength (115.7 proof). Cellar Aged will be available for a suggested retail price of $150 per 750-ml. bottle, in the U.S., in September 2023.