Grand Rapids distillery, Long Road Distillers, has been nominated as the Best Distillery in the country in multiple categories as part of the annual USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards. On Monday, the company announced it has been nominated as the “Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery”, “Best Craft Gin Distillery”, and “Best Craft Brandy Distillery” for 2020. This marks the fourth time that Long Road was nominated in the “Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery” category.
Over their five-year history the distillery has gained national and international attention for their award-winning, locally-sourced and craft-distilled line-up of spirits, including gins, vodkas, liqueurs and whiskies.
The public will choose the winners by casting votes on 10best.com/awards. Each person may vote for their favorites once per day until Monday, September 14. Winners will be announced on September 25. Quick links to Long Road’s nominations can be found at https://longroaddistillers.com/10best/.
Long Road Distillers is one of 20 nominees, in each category, from around the country that were carefully chosen by a panel of American spirits experts. The nominating panel includes Wayne Curtis, renowned spirits and cocktail author of books including “And a Bottle of Rum: A History of the New World in Ten Cocktails”, Brian Christensen, publisher and editor of Artisan Spirit Magazine, Ziggy Eschliman, founder of ZigStyle and award-winning radio host, Eric Grossman, a food and beverage writer and author of Craft Spirits, and Jack Robertiello, a writer and acclaimed wine and spirits judge.
“We’re incredibly proud to receive nominations in multiple categories again this year,” said Kyle VanStrien, co-owner and founder of Long Road Distillers. “We’re fortunate to be part of a thriving craft beverage scene in Michigan. While it feels odd to celebrate such honors in light of the challenges our industry is currently facing, we’re happy for the attention it can bring to our region.”
The distillery is quick to point out how these awards are different from many other competitions, and that they will be relying on their loyal supporters and the community in West Michigan to help them top the list of winners.
“Unlike many competitions where the judging takes place behind closed doors, this contest puts the power in the hands of those that enjoy our spirits and those who have supported us over the past several years,” said Jon O’Connor, co-owner and founder of Long Road Distillers. “We’re humbled by these nominations and hopeful that we can spread the word far and wide to take home a few new honors for Grand Rapids!”
Long Road’s no-shortcuts approach to crafting spirits and a dedication to using locally sourced ingredients has earned them numerous honors and awards, as well as international acclaim for some lesser-known spirits categories, such as Aquavit. Their spirits can be found at the distillery on Grand Rapids’ West Side, at tasting rooms in Grand Haven and Boyne City, and at over 2,100 retailers, bars, and restaurants throughout the state of Michigan.