High quality, delicious wines, great hospitality and stunning views. Where to go when visiting Michigan Wineries.
I visited 2/5 of Michigan AVAs (American Viticultural Area): Old Mission Peninsula and Leelanau Peninsula.
Michigan has shorter growing seasons and big durinal shifts due to the lake effect and many microclimates through the different slopes and elevations. The temperatures can range from below zero to over 100 degrees depending on which of the 4 seasons. Some of the grapes that grow best include: Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio (Gris), Gewürtztraminer, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc.
Michigan has over 148 wineries! On our most recent trip, our first stop was Rove Estate Vineyard and Winery. McKenzie and Creighton are 5th generation farmers and uprooted some of the cherry trees to plant a vineyard. They focus on minimal intervention and biodynamic farming. Not only do they have stunning views being the highest point in Leelanau Peninsula, but they make incredible wines and offer outstanding hospitality. I highly recommend this winery!
Thank you Rove Estate (@roveestate ) for an amazing visit and introduction to quality Michigan wine!
Next up, Mari Vineyards in Old Mission Peninsula, a beautiful property with an Italian flare. All around the building are wood sculptures and art pieces. With something unique and peculiar to look at at every turn.
We were able to tour their in house production facility, bottling line, crush pad and barrel room.
In the center of the barrel room is a skylight looking up to the vineyards and a compass pointing to summer solstice.
Mari vineyards grow a number of different varieties including the typical Riesling, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc. They also have heated tents that allow them to grow varietals that shouldn’t grow in Michigan such as Sangiovese and Nebbiolo!
They even make a “Traditional Method-hybrid” wine where the 2nd fermentation is done in the bottle, riddled, and disgorged. However, instead of the traditional dosage, they are topped off with charmat method sparkling wine. Definitely took a bottle of this sparkling home!
Thank you to Mari Vineyards (@marivineyards ) for a fantastic visit!!
We made a pit stop at the very top of the peninsula to visit this cute little lighthouse!
Lastly we stopped at Chateau Chantal (@chateau.chantal ) for a tasting. Absolutely stunning views! A great place to stop and enjoy the views with live music, wine and charcuterie board. They also have a bed and breakfast, so it’s a great place to stay when visiting Michigan wine country.
Overall, I was very impressed with my visit to Michigan Wine Country! They are making some fantastic wines! I’m excited to see what will come in the next 10-20 years! Cheers to Michigan Wine!