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Created by Maker's Mark to express "a fruit-forward expression with notes of tobacco and wood" (Maker's Mark), 2021 Limited Release FAE-01 is meant to evoke memories of standing in their rickhouses and smelling the essence of all those maturing barrels. Produced using 10 Virgin Toasted American Oak Staves, and bottled at 55.3% ABV.
Rich and creamy on the nose - not immediately fruity. Tons of sweet butter cream, cocoa, honey, pralines and a big tobacco character.
Rich on the palate. Quite a bit of cream, tobacco and some pepper here, and the fruits show themselves off at last. Blackberry, a hint of cherry. Lots of cream, toffee, a hint of pepper.
Long finish. Plenty of sweet dessert notes that pair really well with some demanding oak, and a further hint of cherry and cordial candies.
A lot of fun to drink, Maker's Mark FAE-01 opens up beautifully as you work through a glass of the new Limited Edition. Each sip leaves me wishing I was back on premise at distilleries in the wake of COVID, and the particular transition from big cocoa and cream on the nose to oak, tobacco and fruit on the palate is greatly enticing.