How A ‘Modern Classic’ Cocktail Kickstarted The Maker’s Mark x Beechworth Honey Partnership

How A ‘Modern Classic’ Cocktail Kickstarted The Maker’s Mark x Beechworth Honey Partnership

Randy Lai
Randy Lai


Maker's Mark Beechworth Honey

When asked to think of an all-time great food & beverage pairing, the average person’s first thought probably wouldn’t run to a combo of Bourbon and honey. 

As it turns out: the two prove to be much happier counterparts than one might initially expect. 

The parallels between these categories (and indeed, the personalities who produce them) were examined in vivid detail earlier this week – when F&B editors from across Sydney posted up at Hinchcliff House for a convivial night of back-to-back Bourbon and honey tastings – presided over by the folks at Maker’s Mark Australia. 

And while there are any number of shared values we could unpack, with reference to Beechworth Honey and Maker’s Mark, the thread which wove these two brands together in the first place is, in and of itself, worth a concerted unpicking. 

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Image Credit: Will Salkeld

Concocted in the early 2000s by Sasha Petraske (of Milk & Honey fame), it makes a good deal of sense why the acclaimed bartender’s ‘Gold Rush’ cocktail played such a pivotal role in bringing Beechworth Honey and Maker’s Mark creatively closer together. 

Without wishing to embark on [too big] of a tangent: the genius of the Gold Rush recipe lies in its fiendish simplicity. It takes no time to make, requires few utensils, a grand total of four ingredients – three if you don’t count garnishes – and the sort of clarity of flavour that is unlocked only when one uses Kentucky Straight Bourbon of quality provenance. 

Maker's Mark Beechworth Honey

Working from that strong technical foundation – full of teachable moments about cocktail history to boot – has enabled both brands to showcase their flagship product in the best possible light: with the oaky, spicy richness of Maker’s Mark’s ‘red winter wheat’ recipe bolstered by honey and fresh lemon.

A cocktail we wager most people will enjoy anywhere at any time of year, the Gold Rush signals a meaningful first step in what promises to be a multi-year partnership between Maker’s Mark and one of Australia’s pioneering producers of raw, single varietal honey. 

Image Credit: Will Salkeld

In conversation with Ben Goldsworthy, an apiarist whose family have been at the helm of Beechworth Honey for five generations, it’s clear that the expectation is for this partnership with Maker’s Mark to be a substantial one. 

Both companies espouse the same high standards of social and environmental care required under B Corp certification; with Goldsworthy particularly excited at the prospect of what cross-pollination (pun intended) may be achieved between two traditional handcrafts with as much soul as honey and Bourbon. 

“We don’t do these kinds of partnerships just for the sake of them,” says Goldsworthy. “The rollout of the [Maker’s Mark x Beechworth Honey] cocktail is about celebrating two incredible businesses, and we’re excited to see how we can grow that connection into the future.” 

View a full list of bars and restaurants serving the Maker’s Mark x Beechworth Honey Gold Rush below:

This article is sponsored by Maker’s Mark. Thank you for supporting the brands that suport Boss Hunting.

Randy Lai
Following 6 years in the trenches covering consumer luxury across East Asia, Randy joins Boss Hunting as the team's Commercial Editor. His work has been featured in A Collected Man, M.J. Bale, Soho Home, and the BurdaLuxury portfolio of lifestyle media titles. An ardent watch enthusiast, boozehound and sometimes-menswear dork, drop Randy a line at [email protected].



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