Spirit Cruises Summer 2019 Leaderboard

Maker's Mark Reverses Decision to Change Whiskey Proof

by The Drink Nation on Feb 18, 2013 in Liquor
Maker's Mark Reverses Decision to Change Whiskey Proof

“You spoke. We listened.” Kentucky bourbon distiller Maker’s Mark on Sunday announced it would heed public outcry and back down from its plans to lower the alcohol content of its whiskey. The change, which would have reduced the ABV from 46% to 43%, was intended to reduce shortages, since demand of Maker’s Mark was outpacing supply.

“While we thought we were doing what’s right, this is your brand – and you told us in large numbers to change our decision,” wrote COO Rob Samuels and Chairman Emeritus Bill Samuels, Jr. on the company website. The pair are son and grandson of Maker’s Mark founder Bill Samuels, Sr., and claim that even with the change, the flavor of the whiskey would have stayed true to the original.

Three months of tasting and testing had led to the decision to add a touch more water as the spirit was removed from the barrels where it ages between six and seven years. Water is added to all bourbon at this step, no matter who makes it, and the new recipe would have resulted in an 86-proof instead of 90-proof product, a very slight difference that few, if any, drinkers would have noticed by taste alone.

However, since the alcohol percentage is required to be printed on a the label by law, fans of Maker’s Mark — whom the company calls “Ambassadors” and who are very loyal — would certainly have picked up on the change. So the company announced its intentions, and in return received thousands of angry and disappointed tweets and Facebook posts from drinkers.

“The unanticipated dramatic growth rate of Maker’s Mark is a good problem to have,” the founders write, “and we appreciate some of you telling us you’d even put up with occasional shortages.”

The shortages are attributable to the fact that bourbon and Tennessee whiskey sales by volume rose over 5% in just the past year, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the U.S.. “Super Premium” products in that category of liquor (a group that includes Maker’s Mark) rose 12.4%. That’s a larger surge than the U.S. vodka market — previously king — which grew 4% and 10%, respectively.

Whatever the reason for the initial announcement and change, Maker’s Mark has made fans happy by backing down, and in the process gained a whole lot of free publicity. The company’s Facebook post detailing the reversal has to date received over 26,000 likes and more than 8,300 shares.

Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
Local Winery Spotlight: Vox Vineti Wines

Local Winery Spotlight: Vox Vineti Wines

Ed Lazzerini says his goal is clear - to make world class wine in Pennsylvania. From the taste of it, he is well on his way. ...read more ›

by Drink Philly Nov 21, 2020
Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2019

Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2019

Whether it's to enjoy the first warm breezes of spring or the unexpected sunshine of a crisp day in fall, Philadelphia is full of great places to drin...read more ›

by Drink Philly Apr 11, 2019
The History of The Boulevardier Cocktail - and How You Can Make it at Home

The History of The Boulevardier Cocktail - and How You Can Make it at Home

In this history segment, we take a closer look at a classic cocktail: The Boulevardier....read more ›

by The Drink Nation Nov 2, 2020
SPONSORED
The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

Here it is - the definitive list of Philadelphia's best cocktail bars....read more ›

by Drink Philly Dec 13, 2017
PA Voter Project Seeks to Pay Unemployed Restaurant Workers to Work Election Polls

PA Voter Project Seeks to Pay Unemployed Restaurant Workers to Work Election Polls

Power the Polls PA is looking for unemployed restaurant workers to work the polls and will pay for their time....read more ›

by Drink Philly Sep 16, 2020
You Can Now Get Cocktails To-Go in Center City Philadelphia

You Can Now Get Cocktails To-Go in Center City Philadelphia

Restaurants throughout the Center City limits are offering pre-made cocktails in special take out containers...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 18, 2020
Cocktails to Go in Bars & Restaurants Legalized in PA During Lockdown: Here's Where to Get Them in Philadelphia

Cocktails to Go in Bars & Restaurants Legalized in PA During Lockdown: Here's Where to Get Them in Philadelphia

Bars & restaurants in PA can now sell cocktails-to-go. Here's where to find them in Philadelphia...read more ›

by Drink Philly May 21, 2020
Relief for the Bar, Restaurant, & Hospitality Industry in Philadelphia

Relief for the Bar, Restaurant, & Hospitality Industry in Philadelphia

Right now the hospitality industry is—to put it lightly—struggling. We created a resource directory for an...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Mar 20, 2020
Where to Host a Private Event in Philadelphia

Where to Host a Private Event in Philadelphia

Whether it's for the holidays or you have a special birthday coming up, Philadelphia has some amazing options when it comes to event spaces. ...read more ›

by Drink Philly Nov 26, 2018
Where to Find Beer, Wine, & Liquor To Go in Philadelphia During the Pandemic

Where to Find Beer, Wine, & Liquor To Go in Philadelphia During the Pandemic

Bars and restaurants are officially closed (and offering take-out and delivery only), so your favorite bartend...read more ›

by Drink Philly Mar 18, 2020
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close