Maker’s Mark seeks bartenders’ treasured barware

Maker's Mark Make It In BrooklynThe team at Maker’s Mark bourbon are searching for vintage barware for an exhibition as part of a bartender competition with the prize of a trip to Kentucky.

Maxxium UK has issued an appeal to the UK’s bartending community to submit pictures of their most prized treasures for The Maker’s Mark Bartender Trove.

The best will be displayed on a dedicated pinboard on Pinterest, while a live exhibition of the best pieces will follow next year.

Bartenders are asked to email the picture plus a short explanation along with a cocktail recipe using “rare and coveted” ingredients to

The bartender with the most impressive submission will “experience the preciousness” of Maker’s Mark at first hand with a trip to the distillery in Loretto, Kentucky.

Eileen Livingston, Maxxium UK’s marketing controller for imported whiskey, said: “The Maker’s Mark Bartender Trove celebrates the craftsmanship that goes into making this super-premium bourbon – its small-batch production process, hand-cut labels and individually hand-dipped wax seals – and shares it with the people that bring the liquid to life.

“It unites Maker’s Mark with the craftsmen of the on-trade and will showcase an extraordinary collection of bar wares that will each tell a story and inspire others to take their cocktails to the next level. We are looking forward to discovering the industry’s treasures and sharing the unique stories behind them.”

The campaign was officially launched this month at The Luggage Room bar at the London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square with a masterclass led by Amanda Humphrey of Maxxium UK’s training team, Mixxit.

She was joined by four of London’s leading bartenders: Chris Lacey of Rules, Rusty Cerven of The Connaught Bar, Francesco Turini from Lanes of London and The Luggage Room’s Mario La Pietra.

Each bartender crafted a Maker’s Mark cocktail using rare and precious ingredients, including an unopened bottle of 1974 China Martini aperitif liqueur, a 1956 Yellow Chartreuse liqueur and a rare 2008 Italian Alpine amaro called Braulio. Their twisted classic recipes are below.

They also presented their prized possessions which became the first to populate the Pinterest exhibition. Amanda strained her Bittered Mark cocktail using a vintage ivory-handled strainer made of silver, Chris made his twist on a Brooklyn (pictured) with a 1950s vermouth dropper while Rusty made his Maker’s Mark warm punch in an ornamental urn bought in Moscow.

Eileen said: “Maker’s Mark is precious to bartenders far and wide. Their passion for our brand has been instrumental to the success of Maker’s Mark in the on-trade. The UK remains an important market and I’m proud to say that we are continuing to prioritise ongoing supply of the brand.”

Bittered Mark by Amanda Humphrey

50ml Maker’s Mark
15ml Punt e Mes
1 bar spoon Braulio amaro
2 dashes Walnut bitters

Stir all ingredients over ice then strain into a wine glass and garnish with an orange zest twist. Amanda acquired the 2008 Italian Alpine amaro during gap-year travels.

Make it in Brooklyn by Chris Lacey

75ml Maker’s Mark bourbon
15ml China Martini
12 drops Yellow Chartreuse

Stir over ice and strain into a chilled coupette and garnish with two maraschino cherries. Chris used a 1950s vermouth pipette to administer a precise dose of Chartreuse.

China Martini by Francesco Turini

50ml Maker’s Mark bourbon
20ml Beetroot cordial
20ml Pink grapefruit juice
20ml Egg white
1 dash Chocolate bitters

Shake all ingredients with ice then strain over fresh ice in a rocks glass. Garnish with dried grapefruit, corn and beetroot. Francesco charted his personal journey from Italy to London and the way his palate had matured along the way – his take on what he considers precious.

Boilervadier by Mario La Pietra

30ml Maker’s Mark bourbon
30ml Cocchi vermouth
30ml Aperol
60ml flat Peroni beer

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass, stirring with a bar spoon and then decant into a small bottle. Charge it with CO2 and crown cap before serving. Mario used a bar spoon given to him by the previous bar manager of The Luggage Room.

Flag of our Fathers by Rusty Cerven

50ml Maker’s Mark bourbon
20ml Becherovka liqueur
15ml Homemade 100% cocoa bean syrup
60ml Cinnamon-smoked Ceylon tea

Heat all ingredients and serve in a tea cup, with tonka bean grated over the surface of the drink. Rusty heated it in an ornamental urn bought in Moscow and served it in a teacup once owned by his grandfather.

Bourbon Milk Punch

900ml Maker’s Mark
300ml 10-year-old tawny port
450ml Black carob syrup
900ml Raw milk
900ml Evaporated milk
30ml Vanilla essence

Combine ingredients and serve in vintage tea cups with grated nutmeg and grated tonka bean.

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