Maverick Whiskey – Small Business As A Legacy Project

At first glance, sure, Maverick Whiskey – it’s a small startup. Founded by a couple of San Antonio physicians with three children under age 14. In 2017, they bought a building two blocks north of the Alamo, and invested heavily in distilling and brewing and kitchen equipment. They hired food and alcohol experts. They are busy building their business’ brand with the tagline: “Unbranded since 1836.” 


Unbranded since 1836

That’s a clever slogan, because we remember 19th Century land baron Sam Maverick famously didn’t brand his cattle, inspiring the word we still use today for a person unbounded by convention.

Doctors Ken and Amy Maverick celebrated their business’ official opening in July 23rd, the 216th birthday of Sam Maverick. Ken is the great great great grandson of Sam.

And so upon closer inspection, no, this is no small startup business. This is a family legacy project.

What is a legacy?

To quote my family’s favorite musical1 a legacy is “planting seeds in a garden you never get to see.”

To receive a legacy from a family member who preceded you is to have your identity shaped in ways you didn’t necessarily choose, at least initially. 

Ken received a collection of old diaries and letters from his grandmother and father. Long after becoming an ophthalmologist, he became immersed in the 18th and 19th Century stories contained there.

Says Ken, “I felt compelled to preserve and help tell some of these stories and aim to pass them on to my children.  Some are filled with murder, separations, and drama (like all families).  Some we will keep private (per my grandmother) and some we will tell.”

Ken and Amy Maverick transformed a largely empty bank building into a distillery, brewery, high-end restaurant, and historic tour-destination, all in the service of the legacy of Sam Maverick. The walls of Maverick Whiskey are covered with the official announcements, historic pictures, documents and maps from Ken’s family legacy, as well as his research.

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