Michigan Distilleries Bring Home Awards from American Craft Spirits Association Annual Competition

Three members of the Michigan Craft Distillers Association (MCDA) brought home a collective nine medals from the Sixth Annual Judging of Craft Spirits at the American Craft Spirits Association (ASCA) Annual Distillers Convention and Vendor Trade Show, February 10-12 in Minneapolis, MN.

This year, nearly 500 entries were submitted from 38 states and the District of Columbia in six main categories: Whiskey, Gin, Rum, Vodka & Grain Spirits, Brandy, and Specialty Spirits. In addition to a Best of Show and the Best of Class Distinctions, the judging panel awarded 8 Gold, 68 Silver, and 171 Bronze medals.

Michigan medals include:


  • Long Road Aquavit
  • Long Road Old Aquavit


  • Long Road Apple Brandy
  • Long Road Raspberry Liqueur
  • New Holland Grapefruit Gin
  • New Holland Blueberry Gin
  • New Holland Knickerbocker Gin
  • New Holland Barrel Aged Knickerbocker Gin
  • Detroit City Distillery Homegrown Rye Reserve

For the complete list of medals awarded: https://americancraftspirits.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/2019-ACSA-Awards-List.pdf.

The 6th Annual American Craft Spirits Competition, held in affiliation with Artisan Spirit Magazine, was judged on October 22-24, 2018, at Greenbar Distilling in Los Angeles. The judges represented a diverse range of spirits experts within the industry, including retailers, bar industry leaders, educators, and journalists. ACSA takes great pride in conducting its professional judging program in accordance with a series of detailed protocols. The scoring of spirits was based on a 100-point system, with spirits judged on the overall, cohesive impression of the spirit. Spirits were then assigned a medal based on the average score determined by the following benchmarks: 70-79 = Bronze; 80-89 = Silver; 90-100 = Gold.

The American Craft Spirits Association is the only national registered non-profit trade association representing the U.S. craft spirits industry. Its mission is to elevate and advocate for the community of craft spirits producers, and membership in ACSA is open to anyone. ACSA is governed by a Board of Directors elected by the eligible voting members of the Association. Voting members must be independent, licensed distillers (DSPs) annually removing fewer than 750,000 proof gallons from bond (the amount on which a Federal Excise Tax is paid.)

The Michigan Craft Distillers Association was formed in October 2104 as a non-profit organization charged with marketing the individual member businesses, their products and events, but also help bring a voice for the industry when it comes to legislative issues that affect the overall beverage industry.

MCDA currently represents more than two dozen distilleries with nearly 40 unique tasting room locations around the state, as well as a handful of distillery in-planning members and nearly 30 allied members. Michigan’s craft distilling industry is growing at a rapid pace – ranking #11 in the nation in terms of overall number of distilleries.