About J. Rieger's Kansas City Whiskey
Rieger's Kansas City Whiskey was the first release of the freshly-revived brand. It pays tribute to the practice of "rectifying" whiskey that was widespread in the late 1800s. The process involved adding sherry, prune juice, or other additives to a young whiskey in order to improve its taste and reduce harshness due to the whiskey being under-aged. This expression is a blend of sourced American straight bourbon, light corn, and straight rye whiskeys aged at least 4 years with the addition of 15-year-old Oloroso sherry from the Williams & Humbert Bodega in Jerez, Spain. The unique whiskey is bottled at 92 proof.
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About J. Rieger & Co.
J. Rieger & Co. was a prominent Kansas City, Missouri distillery and the largest mail-order whiskey producer in the US before Prohibition. It was founded by Jacob Rieger, an Austrian immigrant. After opening a grocery store in Kansas City, Rieger quickly turned to making spirits. The company was founded in 1887 and around the turn of the century had a customer base of over 250,000, selling whiskey, gin, rum, and bitters via mail. The company continued to thrive under Rieger's son Alexander but was forced to shut down when Prohibition began. The Rieger family transitioned into banking, while the J. Rieger & Co. building was turned into a parking lot.
In 2010, Ryan Maybee started playing with the idea to revive the historic distillery. Maybee was a Kansas City bartender who opened a bar at the former Rieger Hotel building. He teamed up with Chef Howard Hanna, adding a restaurant to the business. Andy Rieger, at the time the only remaining Rieger from the same bloodline, came to congratulate Maybee on opening night, and Maybee suggested that the distillery be brought back. The two secured the original trademark and set the plan in motion. In 2014 they were joined by the legendary Dave Pickerell, who helped them with the re-launch. Fittingly, the revived company's first product was a whiskey.
Soon after, Head Distiller Nathan Perry joined the team, studying under the mentorship of Pickerell. Their 750-gallon copper Vendome still came online in 2015 and their lineup started expanding with a wheat vodka, gin, and amaro. Today, they distill 1,200 barrels of rye and bourbon each year and the first 5-year-old whiskeys came of age in 2021. J. Rieger & Co. is the first legal Kansas City distillery since Prohibition.
Whiskey origin dates back to Ireland more than 600 years ago and has become the fastest-growing spirit category on the planet since then.
It is produced worldwide from scotch, Irish whiskey, bourbon, rye, Japanese whisky, and other types. Each has a distinct flavor profile due to numerous factors from different types of climate, ingredients, distilling methods, and the aging process.
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