Brighton Center Chosen as New Riff Charitable Partner for 10th Anniversary Celebrations

New Riff Distilling Marks Decade Milestone with Limited Release, 10 Days of Celebrations

Headliner release highlights 10-year bourbon

Newport, KY (June 26, 2024) - - - Celebrating its 10th anniversary this week, New Riff Distilling announced the Headliner special edition will take center stage along with a 10-day lineup of events at the distillery in July. This will be the first release of Headliner, which will become an annual release, and it is anchored by the distillery’s first batches of bourbon, now 10 years old. For more information, visit 

“We asked our distilling team to bring something that is truly special and an expression of their creativity,” said President Mollie Lewis. “Since our founding in 2014, we’ve focused on making exceptional, innovative whiskey while supporting our beloved Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati community. This inaugural Headliner release is like bringing all your favorite artists together into one band. With proceeds from each bottle going to local charitable organizations, this whiskey is sure to earn a well-deserved encore.”

The inaugural Headliner release is bottled at barrel proof and features a mashbill of 45% 10-year-old bourbon, 20% 9-year-old bourbon, 30% 9-year-old rye and 5% 7-year-old single malt whiskey, collectively reflecting New Riff’s flagship bourbon mashbill of 65% corn, 30% rye and 5% malted barley. The resultant blend highlights a rich balance of rye spice, warmth from the extra years in the barrel and touch of dark fruit, according to assistant head distiller Bryon Martin.

Half of proceeds from each bottle will go directly to three charities in Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati that align with New Riff’s core values. The recipient organizations are Brighton Center, Green Umbrella and Horizon Community Funds.

The unique label is inspired by classic concert posters and was designed and hand-screen printed by Cincinnati-area companies Dewhaus and DIY Printing respectively, with additional label printing from Northern Kentucky-based Otto’s Printing and Steinhauser.

Only about 700 bottles of Headliner will be released, with the distillery offering a lottery system for chances to purchase. Lottery chances may be purchased starting today through July 7 via New Riff’s website. Each entry is $5, which will be donated to the three nonprofits, and each chance is also offset with a $5 gift certificate to The Aquifer, the distillery’s tasting room and cocktail bar. Multiple chances may be purchased, but there is a limit of one bottle per person. Chosen lottery winners will be notified via email on July 8. Bottles must be paid for in advance and can be picked up at the distillery beginning July 11 (bottles may not be shipped).

Headliner will retail for $250 per bottle, with $125 being donated to the three designated charities. Each bottle will also come with an exclusive screenprinted 10th anniversary poster.

New Riff is also collaborating with HighGrain Brewing in Cincinnati to produce a commemorative beer named Aqui Brew. Brewed with water from the aquifer located underneath the distillery and the same corn used to make New Riff whiskey, this refreshing pilsner will be available at The Aquifer Tasting Room and both HighGrain locations. It will also be available on draft at area bars and restaurants and in six-packs at select retailers in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati.

From July 11-21, New Riff will host a 10-day lineup of celebratory offerings including gift shop discounts, cocktail specials, live music, on-site food partners and surprise bottle offerings from past releases each day. Each nonprofit partner benefiting from the Headliner release will be highlighted one evening at the distillery. A commemorative 10th anniversary logo will be featured on limited edition merchandise available in the gift shop and online. Follow the distillery on social media for the full schedule and additional announcements.

Founded in 2014 by Ken Lewis, a pioneer in beverage alcohol retailing, New Riff has seen continual, steady and intentional growth. The distillery is well-known for its commitment to Kentucky’s sour mash method and the bottled-in-bond standard, which are used to produce award-winning whiskeys that are new riffs on an old tradition. Production and storage facilities have expanded in recent years, with a new barrel warehouse added in 2013 and a distillery expansion that increased production by 50% in 2021. New Riff has increased its distribution, currently available at retail locations and via direct-to-consumer shipping in more than 40 states. The Newport distillery unveiled additional renovations in late 2023 and early 2024 to improve the visitor experience, including a new gift shop and enlarging The Aquifer, the distillery’s cocktail and tasting bar. After a 50-year career in the industry, Lewis retired in spring 2024, transitioning to a leadership team including CEO Hannah Lowen, President Mollie Lewis and COO Denny Gorman. 


New Riff (Newport, KY):

Fiercely independent and unabashedly innovative: New Riff Distilling starts with time-honored sour mash methods and bottled-in-bond standards, creating new riffs on old traditions since 2014. Located in Northern Kentucky — the gateway to bourbon country — the independently-owned distillery produces award-winning bourbon, rye, single malt whiskey and gin. Bourbon and rye are also available in single barrel selections, and the distillery boasts a popular private barrel selection program offering quarter, half and full barrel picks complete with personalized labels. New Riff sources its water from an alluvial aquifer under the distillery, accessed via a 100’ deep private well and providing cold, clean and mineral-rich water perfect for whiskey making. The public-facing spaces in the distillery, renovated in 2023, include the Riff Shop with customizable gifting options and locally sourced artisan goods; and The Aquifer Tasting Room, located on the third floor of the distillery, featuring signature cocktails, flights, and pours of New Riff’s entire portfolio of award-winning spirits including rare, limited-edition, and distillery-exclusive releases.