Our 2021 Bottled In Bond Straight Rye Whiskey, barreled in the Fall of 2015, represents the first Whiskey distilled in Kansas City since Prohibition, and the first barrels laid down at the J. Rieger & Co. distillery in nearly a century. We proudly present this Rye to you in remembrance of, and in tribute to, one of our founding partners, Dave Pickerell. This Whiskey would not exist without him.
For 95 years, J. Rieger & Co. sat dormant, a casualty of a failed social experiment known as Prohibition. Kansas City didn’t legally distill for nearly a century.
In 2014, under the guidance of industry legend, Dave Pickerell, Ryan Maybee and Andy Rieger successfully relaunched the J. Rieger & Co. brand and got the booze flowing in KC once again. The plan was always to one day release a Whiskey which was milled, distilled, aged and bottled in our distillery. But we knew that day would be years in the future, as the team was committed to the idea that the first whiskey distilled by J. Rieger in Co. in 95 years could not be rushed. This whiskey would be properly aged for years – 6 years is what ended up being right – and not released before everyone on the team agreed it exceeded our standards. We respect the time-honored tradition of aging whiskey in 53-gallon White American Oak barrels and believe that absolutely nothing can substitute for time spent in a barrel.
So here we are, 6 years after distilling the first whiskey in Kansas City in 95 years, with a beautiful, 6-year-old Bottled in Bond Straight Rye Whiskey: milled, distilled, aged, and bottled right here at J. Rieger & Co. in the historic Electric Park district.
This product is a tribute to Dave Pickerell, the larger-than-life legendary Master distiller, who was kind enough to bestow upon us his knowledge and passion for creating the finest Whiskeys in America. And also to Kansas City, our hometown since 1887 for supporting us, believing in us and rooting us on. This is your whiskey to show the world. We’re just getting started.
This whiskey is a pot distilled rye that consists of 96% rye and 4% malted barley. We really wanted to showcase the rye and that is why we chose to make it a very dominant rye grain bill. We distilled this rye paying very close attention to the spice that we all know and love from rye whiskeys and made sure that the new make we put in the barrel had the aggressive spice we had hoped for. The new charred white oak barrels from Independent Stave in Lebanon, Missouri have allowed us to let this whiskey age to perfection and the entire team is incredibly proud of what we have.
After sampling barrels from the fall distilling season of 2015 we were able to pick a selection that we felt would make for the best tasting whiskey that we could put forward as our first release. The team felt we were able to showcase all of the aspects of rye whiskey and our unique distilling process in these barrels. We were also able to leave behind a few barrels that will be able to be utilized in future releases of older age statement whiskeys.
Aromas of caramelized orange and fresh baked bread. Flowery notes of orange blossom and cut grass. Flavors of toasted cedar, five spice, salty sunflower seeds & cinnamon. Mid-palate is rich with chocolate-covered cherries, buttered popcorn, and a lingering spicy fruit-jam character. A cherry-cola like quality. A long finish with drier notes of sage, mint, and a little toasted coconut. Extremely balanced and pleasant to revisit with each sip.