Food Service & Agriculture, Manufacturing, and Retail

Competition names Michigan Vodka Distillery of the Year

November 16, 2015
| By Pat Evans |
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Long Road Distillers bar
Long Road Distillers in northwest Grand Rapids features cocktails, farm-fresh food and to-go bottles. Photo via

An international competition considers a local distillery’s vodka the best in the state.

Long Road Distillers in Grand Rapids, which opened earlier this year, has won the Michigan Vodka Distillery of the Year honor at the New York International Spirits Competition last month.

Judges at the competition tasted nearly 500 spirits from 35 countries.

“This is obviously an exciting achievement for us in our very first year," said Kyle Van Strien, co-founder, Long Road Distillers. "We're thrilled to be a part of the growing craft-distilling movement in Michigan and around the country, and we're humbled to receive this honor, particularly in a very challenging competition often dominated by much larger brands."

Aside from the Michigan honor, Long Road’s vodka, which has “hints of vanilla, caramel, toffee and biscuit,” was also awarded a bronze medal, helping showcase the Midwest.

Each Long Road product — gin, vodka and white whiskey — is produced at its 537 Leonard St. NW location with as many locally sourced ingredients as possible.

“Long Road is fortunate to have access to the rich agricultural resources of West Michigan, which serve as the foundation of all of our spirits,” said Jon O’Connor, co-founder, Long Road Distillers. “We look forward to building upon this initial recognition in the years to come as we expand our spirit offerings.”

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