Kansas City, MO – J Rieger & Co. has announced the 2021 release of its Rieger’s Monogram Whiskey. Prior to Prohibition, Rieger’s Monogram Whiskey was the flagship label for the distillery. The Rieger’s Monogram label was revived in 2017 to be used for the J. Rieger & Co. limited edition line of highly unique and innovative whiskey expressions. Rieger’s 2021 expression is a stark departure from the 2017, 2018, and 2020 expressions, drawing from a single century old cask (Bota #4) originally gifted to the distillery by Williams & Humbert, one of the oldest producers of Sherry in Jerez, Spain. Previously Rieger’s Monogram Whiskey was a blend of the 4 Botas that have been housed in our warehouse since 2016.
Co- Founder of J. Rieger & Co Ryan Maybee says “the 2021 Monogram Whiskey release represents a turning point in the last 7 years of our journey to revive this beloved pre-Prohibition brand. The Monogram bottling has always meant something special to J. Rieger & Co., but this release may be far and away the most special thing we have ever done.”
Rieger’s 2021 Monogram Whiskey consists of a blend of Straight Rye Whiskeys that were between 5 & 10 years old when they entered the Monogram Solera in 2015. For the past 6 years, the Straight Rye was exclusively finished in one cask, Bota #4. That single 500-liter century old Sherry cask was once part of the legendary Williams and Humbert Solera Especial. Traditional solera utilizes a system of fractional blending made famous in Jerez, Spain. The process of replenishing the casks, commonly referred to as Solera, adds complexity and character over time. In the 3 previous releases of Monogram Whiskey – 2017, 2018, and 2020, Cask #4 provided a tiny part of the blend due to it’s profoundly unique character and bold flavors. In a unique departure from our previous releases, the 2021 Monogram Whiskey release consists of only this single cask, and its bold, intense, flavors.
Since the Monogram Whiskey label was revived, all releases have been created in collaboration between the distillery team in Kansas City and Sherry expert Steve Olson.
Both the 2017 and 2018 editions of the Rieger’s Monogram were named in the top ten Global Best New Spirit in the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation Spirited Awards. This extremely limited release (539 bottles) combines elements of rich deep fruit with the characteristic nuttiness of Oloroso Sherry and spices. This year’s tasting notes highlight the evolution of Rieger’s 2021 Monogram Whiskey Oloroso Bota as a standout.
The opening aroma is reminiscent of Spring flowers. Which is surprising considering the age and intensity of this Whiskey. It’s actually bright and green and fresh. There are also bright, fruity notes of tamarind, papaya and cola. On the first entry to the palate is charred honeycomb…a deep sweetness that is covered with ash and char, molasses, tar, toasted marshmallow and deep, dried, dark fruits like prune and raisin. The sweet and savory flavors mingle and dance in harmony…spicy tobacco leads to decadent butter pecan ice cream. The texture is creamy and elegant. Salty, toasted pumpernickel bread leads to chocolate-covered almonds. There is a deep, dry, earthy-leather quality that seems to echo throughout higher-note flavors of mint, eucalyptus, black tea, and clover honey. The complexity is so rich and layered that you hardly notice that it’s 110 proof. Years on top of years of aging add so much depth that it hardly registers as powerful as it is…but it’s there. And the finish lingers…..
Only 539 bottles of Rieger’s Monogram Whiskey 2021 Oloroso Bota will be made available at liquor retailers and restaurants across the Kansas City metro area. A select allocation will be available in New York and a few other select markets. The suggested retail price is $139.99 and is bottled at 110 proof (55% abv).
For Kansas City Metropolitan residents, J. Rieger & Co will host a series of intimate educational experiences in the Tasting Room at the J. Rieger & Co. distillery highlighting the 2021 release on June 23rd and 24th, hosted by J. Rieger & Co Co-Founder Ryan Maybee and Head Distiller Nathan Perry. The on site events will be bookable via Tock for $60 per person, with the option to add a bottle of 2021 Monogram to take home with your reservation. Event patrons will sample the current release of Rieger’s Monogram Whiskey, as well as a selection of specialty cocktails from J. Rieger & Co. National Beverage Director Andrew Olsen. Attendees will go home with a copy of Talia Baiocchi’s book Sherry, A Modern Guide to The Wine World’s Best Kept Secret.
About J. Rieger & Co.
Jacob Rieger & Company was originally founded in 1887 in Kansas City’s West Bottoms Livestock Exchange district. The distillery produced over 100 alcoholic products on a national basis, including the iconic Monogram Whiskey, but it was forced to close in 1919 with the advent of Prohibition. In 2014, 95 years after Prohibition, the brand was relaunched by business partners Ryan Maybee, co-founder of The Rieger and Manifesto, and Andy Rieger, the great-great-great-grandson of Jacob Rieger. The current distillery is located in the historic Electric Park district of the East Bottoms within Kansas City. The core product line includes Kansas City Whiskey, Midwestern Dry Gin, Caffè Amaro, and Premium Wheat Vodka. J. Rieger & Co. is distributed in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington DC, and Wisconsin.
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