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Maker’s Mark is instantly recognizable, with its red wax-dipped bottle. Maker’s 46 is a new, improved premium version of Maker’s Mark that offers bourbon drinkers something a little more interesting. It begins life as regular Maker’s Mark, aged about 6 years. At that point, a number of charred French oak barrel staves are added to the bottle and the bourbon is left to age for another few months. The oak adds color, intensifies flavor and leaves drinkers with a much smoother spirit once it is bottled.
Maker’s 46 smells almost like a very oaky riesling when you first pour it. It has a very intense golden color. There are strong aromas of caramel, butter and oak with a brightness that is reminiscent of tart apples. You taste caramel, honey, oak and vanilla when you sip it – and it is smooth enough to sip without ice, even if you normally drink your bourbon on the rocks. It’s easy to drink, though the flavors are strong enough that you’ll want to stick to regular Maker’s Mark if you’re mixing cocktails as this might actually overpower the other ingredients you’re working with.
Worth another round? Definitely, especially if you’re a fan of Maker’s Mark to begin with because this delivers a much more intense version of its familiar flavor. It’s smooth and, while it is easy to drink, the strong and slow finish will allow you to savor this for a long time.