J.Rieger's is a brand of whiskey created in 1887 in Kansas City, Missouri by an Austro-Hungarian immigrant, Jacob Rieger. Although it was enjoying great success, the distillery had to close its doors in 1920 due to Prohibition. In April 2010, 90 years after the start of Prohibition, the idea of bringing back the historic distillery was dreamed up by Ryan Maybee, a Kansas City bartender. Ryan opened his speak-easy bar in the basement of the Rieger Hotel in 2009, without knowing its history. A year later he opened a restaurant on the ground floor of the building and met Andy Rieger on the opening night, who at the time was the only living “Rieger” of Jacob's lineage. After a brief introduction, Ryan casually told Andy that they should bring back the old distillery. In 2014, they (re)launched the brand under the direction of Dave Picklerell (Maker's Mark), with the aim of re-establishing J. Rieger & Co. as one of the best whiskey producers in the country. Kansas City Whiskey quickly gained national attention, being named to the Top 4 Best New International Spirits or Cocktail Ingredients at the 2015 Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards.