Readers Choice

10Best Readers' ChoiceChosen by readers of USA TODAY and 10Best

RCA checkmarkGrand Rapids, Mich.

Photo courtesy of Experience Grand Rapids

Grand Rapids earns a spot among the nation's top beer cities with more than a dozen area breweries, including Founder's Brewing Co., as well as one of the top ranked beer bars out, HopCat. "plus the city really promotes beer," says CEO of Beer Voyage Dr. Ruth Berman. The Convention and Visitors Bureau "has does a really great job of promoting the beer as a tourist venue."


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Meet the Experts

Gary Monterosso

Gary Monterosso is an award-winning critic, who has written for national and regional publications. He can be seen on the two-hour History Channel show called The Epic History of Everyday Things. He is the author of the book, 'Artisan Beers.'  Gary has appeared on many tv programs, including CBS News New York, discussing craft beers. He's also guested on BBC radio, offering an American perspective on the beverage.  One of the highlights of his career was a three-year stint on the Sirius Satellite Radio network, talking about the latest happenings in the beer world. In early 2014, Gary was selected by Chilled Magazine to be a member of the 'Chilled 100,' signifying him as one of the top 100 beverage personalities in the USA.  Gary has qualified as a Certified Beer Server, a part of the Cicerone Certification Program, recognizing his knowledge of beer styles, culture, the brewing process and ingredients.  You'll find him at tastings and seminars throughout the year.  

Ruth Berman

Dr. Ruth Berman is the CEO and BBB (Brains Beyond the Beer) of Bon Beer Voyage, an award winning beer tour company for Belgian and Craft Beer Enthusiasts. Bon Beer Voyage was created by Ruth and her husband, Mike Arra, the company’s beer guide, as the beer geek’s answer to wine snob tours- without the snob part.  They offer higher quality, small group, gourmet beer vacations both in the US and abroad; providing their guests with one-of-kind-experiences, sightseeing, great food and brewery insider visits and tastings. Ruth is also a Certified Tour Director, Licensed Tour Guide and a Cicerone Program Certified Beer Server. While traveling, Ruth likes to do watercolor paintings of the breweries she visits.   

Tara Nurin

Tara Nurin is a veteran freelance journalist based just outside  Philadelphia. The former TV reporter specializes in craft beer, dining and destination coverage and writes regularly about her three passions -- Philly, food, drink -- for local and national pubs.  Tara, who grew up speaking Spanish and French, spent childhood holidays on a Puerto Rican beach and bummed around Paris for her junior year of college. She’s lived in more than a dozen American cities and still travels globally in search of a plate of local food, an artisanal beer and a hearty laugh with the countrymen.

Lydia Schrandt

Lydia thought she hated beer until she took her first sip of Live Oak Hefeweizen at Opal Divine's on Sixth Street in Austin. So began her journey into the world of beer snobbery. Since that first love affair with a microbrew, Lydia has sampled hundreds of craft beers and has written about the beer scene in Austin for Draft magazine. Lately, her favorites are (512) Pecan Porter, Left Hand Milk Stout and Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA.