Maker's Mark Won't Cut Alcohol Content


I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
Apr 22, 2002
Maker's Mark Won't Cut Alcohol Content

By ABC News | ABC News Blogs – Sun, Feb 17, 2013 2:22 PM EST

  • Maker's Mark Won't Cut Alcohol Content (ABC News)

Maker's Mark drew a storm of complaints when the venerable bourbon distiller announced this week it would be diluting its whisky due to anticipated supply shortages, but today it announced it is scrapping the plan.

"While we thought we were doing what's right, this is your brand - and you told us in large numbers to change our decision," the company said in a statement released today. "You spoke. We listened. And we're sincerely sorry we let you down."

Effective immediately, the company said, it was reversing its decision to lower the alcohol content of Maker's Mark, and would resume production at 45 percent alcohol by volume.

"The unanticipated dramatic growth rate of Maker's Mark is a good problem to have, and we appreciate some of you telling us you'd even put up with occasional shortages," said the statement, signed by COO Rob Samuels and chairman emeritus Bill Samuels Jr. "We promise we'll deal with them as best we can, as we work to expand capacity at the distillery."

The response came after angry Maker's Mark lovers took to Twitter to complain about the company lowering the alcohol content.

"Hey, @MakersMark Raise prices if you must, but don't mess with success! Ever heard of New Coke? #bourbon" wrote one Twitter user.

Maker's Mark had said it was forced to make the decision to decreasing the proof of its whisky from 90 proof to 84 proof because of "unforeseen demand." Bill Samuels Jr. had said that the brand wanted to keep its prices competitive.

"While not every part of the country has seen shortages yet, many have, and the demand is continuing to grow at a pace we've never before experienced. While we are investing today to expand capacity for the future, by producing 42 percent ABV Maker's Mark we'll be able to better meet our ongoing supply issues without compromising the taste," he said in a statement.

The one-brand company doesn't purchase bourbon from other distillers, making forecasting difficult. The age range of the whiskey, five years nine months to seven years, had allowed the brand to keep ahead of market shortages in the past.

The owners said they had tested the watered-down bourbon themselves and validated their own findings with consumer research. Both agreed that "there's no difference in the taste," Samuels said.


PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
Jan 12, 2010
Northern California
Norton had a great line about this last night on Red Eye.

(Paraphrasing) "How much drunker can a person get on 90 proof over 84 proof? You still end up with the same class of girl, believe me."

That said, I always appreciate a company that listens so closely to its consumers.


Sick Puppy
Jun 2, 2005
Souf Florida
on my birthday I nearly killed a bottle of Makers 46, their 94 proof version. Amazingly was up the next day without a problem, considering my b/f said I was unresponsive at night and "guppying" air while sleeping. He said it's a sign of alcohol poisoning.



I'm Team Piggy!
Oct 26, 2011
I was really saddened when Aftershock and Goldschlager pulled this nonsense.
Happy to see the public outcry kept them from watering the drinks down.
Top Bottom