Having grown up the grandson of a Springfield, KY bootlegger and son of a former bartender, Joe Riggs was raised hearing stories of his grandfather being “the only bootlegger to drive around Nelson County Courthouse on two wheels without breaking a bottle.” As well as watching his mother memorize cocktail recipes, he was always drawn to work in the spirits and hospitality industry. A 16-year veteran of restaurants, Joe Riggs has won multiple cocktail contests and has bartended and hosted events including the Manhattan Cocktail Classic, Tales of the Cocktail, and The Kentucky Bourbon Festival.
An eleven-year bar and spirits career has led Joe to consult bar programs ranging from award-winning breweries to authentic Taiwanese restaurants and fine dining Italian steakhouses.
Joe has executed events for both suppliers and distributors and has served as a guest speaker at accredited culinary schools on the topic of bar trends and execution. He has worked for Redemption since 2012 after leaving the bar to be a full-time ambassador in February 2015.
Matt Klette was raised along the Kentucky Bourbon trail. Whiskey was always prevalent in his life, but he found his calling working at bars while attending The University of Kentucky.
After moving to Los Angeles to pursue a career as an actor, it became apparent that cocktails and bars were not going anywhere in his life. After cutting his teeth and learning from some of the top mentors in the cocktail world, Matt eventually created his own consulting company. Offering everything from bar design to spirits classes, Matt traveled the country focusing on small companies that didn’t have the funds to pay for the bigger names in the field.
It is Matt’s belief that creating a national cocktail culture is all about starting from the ground up. He is very excited to bring his unique set of skills and passion to the Redemption team.