Wine & Travel

Snooth User: whythulc

Good Michigan wine?

Posted by whythulc, Oct 29, 2010.

I'm a newbie here at Snooth. :) In addition to taking the leap into the lovely world of wine and experiencing the brands that the globe has to offer, I figure I'd also ask you wonderful people about some local stuff too. Are any of you from the Michigan area?

I live about an hour north of Detroit. There's several vineyards over on the west side of the state. Hopefully next summer I'll get out that direction to take some tours/tastings. But in the mean time, are there any Midwest or Michigan varieties that you like/love?


Reply by MReff, Oct 29, 2010.

Paging Greg T........

Reply by katkos, Oct 29, 2010.

The Traverse City area has some great wineries.  My favorite is 2 Lads.  Word of warning, some of the bigger wineries allow tour buses, if you see those, just keep on driving.  Not even worth fighting the hordes.

Reply by GregT, Oct 30, 2010.

Well son of a gun.  I used to go out to the west part of the state when I was younger and we'd drink apple wine and puke in the streets of Paw Paw and that was pretty much it.  And for most of my life I wrote off Michigan wine as an abberation.

But there are indeed some people who've looked into it and have decided to try making good wine.  Probably best of the lot is Wyncroft - only available at the winery.  Jim Lester is the owner/winemaker and he completely destroyed my preconceptions - he's really making good wine.  It's not an accident, he did a lot of investigation as to latitude, soil types, weather, sun exposure, and grape varieties, but he's got a good Pinot Noir, a great Chardonnay, and a few others that are definitely worth trying.

Then there is Chat Grand Traverse - they, like most of the other wineries, are a bit north of Lester's winery, farther up the coast. They do a Riesling, Chard, and a few other good whites.  Left Foot Charley is another one that is making respectable wine.  Mawby is OK if you like sparkling wine - they seem to do well across the state although I'm not usually blown away by sparkling wine.  Still, in a cold place like Michigan, it's a good idea.

And then of course, there is Ciccone - the wine made by Madonna's family.  See, she's originally from Michigan even though for a few years she pretended to have a phony generic British accent. I haven't had the wine on principle, so have no idea how it is. Michigan isn't going to be California but for cold weather grapes that do well in moist climates, they may be better in some cases.  For good stuff, it's still a very young producing area, so let's see what happens in the future.   

Reply by BVWineS, Nov 8, 2010.

Hey Newbie!

Lots of info from great guys at

Today, Northern Michigan is The State of Riesling. From the recent article by Howard Hewitt; "The Michigan wine industry has grown significantly, increasing vineyard area by 60 percent in the last 10 years. From 20 wineries in the late 1990s to more than 70 today, Michigan wine is gaining attention and accolades. Michigan winemakers are well positioned because of the Great Lakes."

During last three years we are traveling from NJ to Traverse City area at least twice a year since discovered this Wine Country. It is so much to do and to see even beside wineries.

Try Black Star Farms, Brys, Chateau Grand Traverse, Bel Lago, Shady Lane, L. Mawby, Circa, 2Lads, Left Food Charley. It takes almost entire day just for Old Mission Peninsula with its 7 wineries. Leelanau has I think 18, so good luck.

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