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Jameson vs Maker’s Mark: Discover the Better!

Discover the differences between Jameson vs Maker’s Mark in this head to head comparison and decide which Whiskey is better for You!


NoseFloral, marmalade, caramel
PalateRipe fruit, vanilla
FinishMedium, caramel, spice
Alcohol content80 proof (40% ABV)
How to drinkCocktails
Similar toKnob Creek, Crown Royal

Nose is floral with sweet notes of orange marmalade and caramel with a bit of alcohol coming behind but nothing too severe.

On the palate the Jameson shows a good body, is sweet and fruity, with a high vanilla note. There is a pesky metallic note coming late to the party, not something terrible but weird.

The finish has a medium length, mostly sweet with a dash of black pepper on the tail.

Jameson smooth and versatile whiskey that mixes nicely in any cocktail with no bad bite, well rounded and gets better when adding a splash of water, ginger ale or ice.

A few drops of water are enough to tune down alcoholic, peppery notes and that annoying metallic note.

Jameson Whiskey is the top-selling Irish whiskey across the globe for two solid reasons: It is smooth and affordable offering good value for the money; solid option for casual drinking or something not too pricey.

There are a few facts worth knowing about Jameson Whiskey:

  • Jameson is a blend of malted and unmalted barley aged for at least 4 years in ex-bourbon casks from Kentucky and ex-sherry casks from Spain.
  • This whisky is triple-distilled which is the norm in the Irish whiskey industry. Most spirits in are double-distilled but the Irish add a distillation as they like smooth liquors.
  • Jameson is no longer Irish but French as it was acquired by Pernod Ricard who also owns big brands such as Chivas Regal and Glenlivet.
  • Crafted at the Jameson Distillery in Old Midleton, Ireland.

Maker’s Mark

NoseCinnamon, clove, nutmeg, almond
PalateRye spice, caramel, dried fruit, nuts
FinishLong, caramel, spice
Alcohol content90 proof (45% ABV)
How to drinkRocks, cocktails
Similar toKirkland Bourbon, Larceny

There is acetone on the nose at first that fades into vanilla and cherry as you let it develop in the glass.

On the palate there is vanilla, caramel, cherry and honey providing a pleasant mouthfeel.

The finish has a moderate length, is sweet with very little heat and just a tad of pepper.

Adding a drop of water makes it taste like a Tootsie Pop, while tuning down the spicy note making it easier to sip.

Maker’s Mark is a well-rounded and enjoyable bourbon without any bold flavors. It is one of the few bourbons, along Van Winkle, Weller, Old Elk, Larceny, that carry wheat in the mash as opposed to rye.

This makes the Maker’s Mark a bit sweeter and smoother while providing a bready flavor.

Nothing stands-out but there are no off-putting notes as it is nicely balanced, yet with enough body.

It makes a good entry-level bottle to those new to bourbon or liquors in general or a nice “everyday whisky” for those looking for a non-challenging sipper.

I’m not fond of using wheated bourbons as mixers as I feel they lack the punch to deliver tasty cocktails making me prefer a rye whiskey brand for an Old Fashioned.

There are few facts about Maker’s Mark worth knowing:

  • Maker’s Mark is made from 70% corn, 16% red wheat, and 14% malted barley. 
  • While most whiskeys age for a set amount of time, Maker’s is bottled when the tasters call it to be ready; that is between 6 and 7 years.
  • This one of the few whiskey brands in the United States that uses “whisky” instead of “whiskey” in its name due to the founders Scottish heritage.
  • Maker’s bottles stand out from the rest due to the red wax seal that is still made by hand nowadays.
  • Maker’s Mark is owned by Beam Suntory, a Japanese drinks giant who also holds Jim Beam.

Jameson vs Maker’s Mark: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

Maker’s Mark$32

Jameson vs Maker’s Mark: Which is better?

Maker’s Mark is a better sipper and Jameson a better mixer

WhiskeyJamesonMaker’s Mark
  • Maker’s Mark makes a better everyday sipper. This is an easy, non-challenging bourbon that drinks nicely neat or rocks as it does not have any off-putting notes.
  • Jameson is not the best sipper but makes the better whiskey to make cocktails. It mixes incredibly well in any cocktail, especially with ginger ale and shines in Irish Coffee.

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