Long Road Distillers Named Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery in the United States
Local distillery takes top honors in the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards Contest
Grand Rapids, Michigan – Internationally acclaimed Grand Rapids distillery, Long Road Distillers, has taken home top honors and was named “Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery in the United States” as part of the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards. Over their two year history the distillery has gained lots of attention for their award-winning, locally-sourced and craft distilled line-up of spirits, including gins, vodkas, aquavits, and whiskies.
Long Road Distillers topped a list of 20 nominees from around the country that were carefully chosen by a panel of American spirits experts. The public then had the opportunity to vote for their favorites over the course of four weeks. The nominating panel included Emily Arden Wells, editor and founder of Gastronomista, Brian Christensen, publisher and editor of Artisan Spirit Magazine, Laura Johnson, founder of You & Yours Distillery and craft cocktail blog Distillerista, and Arthur Shapiro, writer and publisher of Booze Business and author of Inside the Bottle: People, Brands and Stories.
“This is an incredible honor for us,” said Jon O’Connor, co-owner and founder of Long Road Distillers. “We have a ton of respect for every nominee on the list, and some have been leaders in our industry for years. To even have had the chance to compete against them was a big deal for us.”
The distillery is quick to recognize how this award is different from past honors, and credits not only their team members, but also their loyal customers, guests and followers.
“Unlike some competitions where the judging takes place behind closed doors, this contest put the power in the hands of those that enjoy our spirits and have supported us over the past few years,” said Kyle VanStrien, co-owner and founder of Long Road Distillers. “We’re humbled by this win and proud of our team for constantly living our mission of crafting world-class spirits right here in West Michigan!”
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 and at over 700 retailers, bars, and restaurants throughout the state of Michigan.