Whisky Advocate

Photo of the new Maker’s Mark “46” Bourbon

March 23rd, 2010

I wrote about this upcoming bourbon several times on WDJK, but my most recent post is here (with links to the older posts). Now an image of it has just emerged on the Maker’s Mark Facebook fan page. Here it is.

More to follow…

45 Responses to “Photo of the new Maker’s Mark “46” Bourbon”

  1. Really looking forward to trying this. Nice to see them mixing it up again. I wasn’t able to get a bottle of the gold wax but I heard it was good.

  2. Kevin says:

    Classy looking bottle and still reminiscent of the regular Maker’s bottle. Looking forward to tasting it.

  3. Alex says:

    So I’m guessing that “46” is the ABV? I thought they were going to launch this with a more creative name and a look that was a larger departure from their main product. Although I always thought it made more sense to leverage off of the established brand.

    • John Hansell says:

      The “work in progress” samples I tasted of this were bottled at 47%, not 46% abv. Maybe 46 is the formula number of the different formulas they tried?

      • Alex says:

        I think you’re right. But confusing. It’s a good thing that the winning formula didn’t turn out to be the 7th one tried, huh? 🙂

        • AntonM says:

          46 is named for the wood-searing technique utilized in its production for flavoring purposes

    • Alcohology says:

      Actually, the ’46’ is the item number of the French Oak that Bill and Kevin chose, which is apparently the top quality French Oak that they could find.

      The bourbon is taken out of the barrel after full maturation, 10 staves are attached to the barrel and bourbon is returned for 5 – 11 weeks. So I hear…

  4. sam k says:

    Well, I suppose it’s having the intended effect, since the questions are rolling in, and I like the packaging, but is it going to be more than simply an additional two degrees of proof above the standard? I hope so!

  5. Hunter says:

    I voted for “Star Hill Whisky”, but the “46” does look classy.

  6. Gary says:

    Nice packaging. Will be interested to hear the tasting notes.

  7. Red_Arremer says:

    But based on the earlier thread, we all know that the liquid will have more depth and intensity than the target audience that the predictable modern-luxury glasswork brings to mind.

    The standard MM already has absolutely massive credibility in the mind of the average drinker. So how will this stand in relation to it? I just hope it’s the Tanqueray 10 and not the Rangpur (but how many on this blog will know what I’m getting at with that 🙂 )

    • Gary says:

      Not me! 😀

    • Mark says:

      Yes, Red, here’s hoping they enhance their reputation with this release rather than damage it. That Rangpur stuff was some weird candy gin. 10, on the other hand, is the Tanq that kicks.

    • Bob Siddoway says:

      Hey, I like Rangpur for a limey martini every once in awhile!

      But yeah, it will be interesting to see how this pans out. I’m sure it won’t be much of a departure from the regular MM, which probably means it will still be decent but boring, how most people prefer their whiskey.

      I’m hoping it will have at least more character, but I’m certain it won’t have the higher proofs I enjoy. Barrel proof would be a nice change, though, like Bookers, WT Rare Breed, or George T. Stagg.

      • Mark says:

        No offense intended. It clearly has a following. It just tastes fake to me. Fresh limes seem preferable.

        But again, the hope is that “46” is a more robust (and maybe less sweet?) Maker’s that enhances their already rich reputation.

    • Steve says:


      I completely agree Tanq 10 is wonderful. The real crime with Rangpur is Tanq pulled their best gin, Malacca, out of their portfolio to make room for Rangpur.

      Maybe with the recent cocktail resurgence with Old Tom and some other non-London dry gins getting some traction we’ll see a return of Malacca and retirement for Rangpur. I certainly hope so since that’s the way I Tanqueray (yeah, I can’t believe I typed that either).

      • Mark says:

        Steve, I still miss Malacca.

        • Red_Arremer says:

          I have a closed bottle of Malacca that I picked up in a dusty little store a year ago. I’ve never had the stuff and I’ve been debating E-bay. I love gin and I know it’s a little bit of a collector’s item, but, if it’s good I’d open it myself. What’s it like?

          • Mr Manhattan says:

            I’ve heard it’s like an Old Tom, which is to say it’s got some sweetness to it and the botanicals don’t emphasize juniper as in a London Dry.

            What’s interesting to me is that the even tried to launch a product like the Malacca at the time they did, in advance of the current cocktail renaissance.


          • Mark says:

            Michael is quite correct about it not being a standard London Dry; it is “sweeter” but I don’t think of it as a sweet spirit. It seemed to me very smooth (in part, 80 proof) and spicy — exotic southeast Asian spice, including even a hint of cinnamon. I drank it from ’00-’04, the whole time it was in production, and always only in the form of a bone-dry martini (tenders could think vermouth, if needed, but never use it). Then I found a little bar in Chicago that had a bottle and no idea what it was. I drank there, with the standard pauses of a person with a life, until it was gone. It was a noteworthy gin, as I remember it, because Sapphire was available and people liked it but Malacca blew it away. I think we have gins now that would probably blow Malacca away, but you have a fine bottle of gin there. I know people on write inquiries looking for bottles. You could probably sell it and buy some fine whisky…

          • Red_Arremer says:

            Thanks Mark and everybody– Much appreciated. I’ll check chowhound out.

          • Steve says:


            I agree with Mark’s comments. Yes, it is sweeter, has less juniper, and more subtle spices than your standard London dry. Mark’s call on cinnamon sounds about right. I think it’s a bit closer to Plymouth than any London dry but the botanicals are different. I used (and still use) Tanq 10 for martinis, but I used Malacca exclusively for gin and tonics, gin rickeys, Ramos gin fizzes, French 75’s, and a slew of other drinks. I still think Malacca made the best g’n’t I’ve ever tasted.

            I’m not a fan of the medicinal Sapphire, or really even the standard Bombay, and completely agree Malacca blew them away. So for me it’s Tanq 10 and Plymouth until Tanq sees the error of their ways and brings back Malacca. I will try the two new Old Tom style gins on the market if I can find them to see if they may be placeholders in the meanwhile.

            I’m sure you can get a good price on chowhound. Malacca is a beautiful gin with a well-deserved cult following.

  8. Alex says:

    Pretty looking – hope I like the taste as much.

  9. Louis says:

    Cool shape. But for scotch, this shape is usually mean to conjure up visions of the pot still. Any idea when it will be hitting the shelves?

    • Red_Arremer says:

      That’s an interesting idea, Louis. Have you heard that that’s what bottle shapes like this are about for scotch?

    • Alex says:

      To me, this bottle looks more like the it builds on the existing Maker’s Mark bottle’s wide rounded shoulders which then taper.

  10. Chef! says:

    Let’s hope what’s inside is as nice and elegant as the bottle. 😉

  11. Alcohology says:

    Fantastic. What a beautiful bottle.

    Happily, I was able to taste it last week and, no joke – it’s a really good whisky. No mess’n around, it’s good. I was able to write about it on my blog in case anyone’s interested:

    I for one am very much looking forward to getting my hands on a full bottle. Just another month or so, folks.

    • JWC says:

      Was overseas on a business trip for the last week and missed out on this and other posts. I just read your review and was disappointed to read the following: “Maker’s ‘46? is meant to be mixed”. To me, that usually means it’s not good enough to stand on its own.

  12. Neil Fusillo says:

    I like the bottle. Nice, elegant shape and very similar to their current one, but a bit more ’rounded. The name? Well… what’s in a name? Whisk(e)y’s getting to be like cars in that respect. Pretty soon, they’ll have names being spat out of a computer to conjure up just the right ‘marketing’ feel with each one. The new Bruichladdich Caldera. Or the Compass Box Fusionista. At least 46 sounds like a good, strong name for an American bourbon.

    But to be honest, they could have called it Farsnippity Doo and I’d drink it if it tastes good.

  13. mike says:

    can it still be called ‘straight bourbon’ as it has benn taken out of the barrel and then put back in?

    • Red_Arremer says:

      Yes mike. This has come up on this site before. As long as it’s spent the required amount of time (is that two or three years btw?) in new oak it’s “straight.”

      • sam k says:

        It needs to age two years in order to be called “straight,” but if it’s less than four, it must also mention the actual age on the label.

  14. […] Mark released a picture of their new “46″ Bourbon on Facebook.  It looks great and many wonderful people are […]

  15. Tanguy says:

    They chose “46” to commemorate my birth year of 1946

  16. Kevin Smith - Maker's Mark Distillery says:

    Hi John….Sorry for being out of touch for a little while but things have been busy here at the distillery, spring cleaning you know. And I see since I was last on your site that the world has been given a look at our new bourbon that is coming out in June. I am really excited for everyone to get a chance to experience the taste. In the past few months we have been able to let a few more folks taste Maker’s 46 and the positive feedback has been outstanding.

    I actually had one noted celebrity call me at the distillery while he tasted it (neat) with his bourbon drinking buddy…they both thought it was fantastic. He went on to say that he and his buddy ended up in a friendly argument trying to figure out how we made it taste the way it did…so he spontaneously called me to settle the dispute. They were both surprised when I shared with them that the sweet oak toasty aroma and forward, spicy, lingering flavor came from the unique seared oak staves that Brad Boswell created. Needless to say neither one guessed right.

    In regards to those that are skeptical and think this might be a gimmick…all I can say is that I hope you stay open minded enough to try it. I think you will find the amped up, big, bold flavor to be worthy of your consideration.

  17. […] enough to taste several “work in progress” samples with Kevin, which I wrote about here and several times earlier, but I don’t know what the final product is going to taste like […]

  18. […] 46.  A sample bottle was there.  I tried it (apparently even before John Hansell!).  By that point my palate was not […]

  19. Steve says:

    I sampled this at Julio’s Liquors in Westboro, MA at their annual Whiskey GoGo in February…..anxiously awaiting its arrival on the shelves!!!

  20. Karly says:

    You know, it’s called 46 because it was the 46th barrel they taste tested. They tried a new one each day. The distributor for me described it as having hickory taste. I’m anxiously awaiting the arrival next month!

© Copyright 2017. Whisky Advocate. All rights reserved.