Maker's Mark Wood Finishing Series 2020 SE4 x PR5
Bourbon — Kentucky, USA
Reviewed November 4, 2022
During the height of the pandemic in California, people were making a mad dash for alcohol. I guess if you're going to be stuck at home... may as well be stuck and hammered, right? As a result, finding Maker's Mark Wood Finishing Series 2020 release was all but impossible. Not only does distribution from Kentucky all the way out to California take ages, but the second limited bottles like this hit store shelves; they are wiped out. I all but gave up the hope of ever tasting SE4 PR5. And then, the other day as I was looking online for BRT 01 and BRT 02 I stumbled across a store that advertised 5 bottles of SE4 PR5 in stock. Probably because of the ridiculously inflated price tag they were asking. And although I hate paying almost triple retail MSRP for a bottle, I saw my one chance to catch this fleeting unicorn and took it. Was it worth the 2 year wait? The nose is rich and robust. Sweet and thick like caramel and molasses. A little bit of toasted oats adds some body to that nose. The taste balances the line between sweet and spicy. Its got a lot more complexity than Maker's Mark core selections for sure. It starts off innocently enough with some sweet caramel and a little bit of milk chocolate. As you move toward the middle of the taste, your tongue is caught in fiery spice that opens up from mid tongue out. Its a bit herbaceous and just faintly related to rye. As that spice dies down you get a background of roasted peanuts which adds just a tad of savory quality to the flavor. The part of this bourbon I find lacking is the aftertaste though. Once the bourbon is down and that nutty finish is gone, a bit of sourness creeps onto the back of the palate that reminds me a bit of the aftertaste of warm coke. Its weird... I have never tasted this sort of aftertaste on any Maker's Mark whiskey. But somehow it fits in to character with the overall complexity of this selection.
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