The Must-Visit Wineries in Michigan

Chateau Chantal vineyards on the Old Mission Peninsula looking toward Grand Traverse Bay, Michigan, USA
Chateau Chantal vineyards on the Old Mission Peninsula looking toward Grand Traverse Bay, Michigan, USA | © Dennis Cox / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Frank Lopez
Writer31 July 2020

Producing some of the best sparkling wine found outside of Europe, Michigan’s wine industry is on the way up. It goes without saying that the wineries of Michigan are surrounded by exquisite grounds and nature that make for the perfect environment for grapes – and an excellent setting to enjoy a glass or two. We at Culture Trip have chosen some of our favorite places for a tipple.

Black Star Farms Winery & Spirits

Winery
Map View
Michigan, MI, Mich, Upper Midwest, Traverse City, Leelanau Peninsula, Black Star Farms, vineyard, vineyards, winery, tasting room, bar lounge pub, pub
© Jeffrey Isaac Greenberg 7+ / Alamy Stock Photo

Gaining accolades such as Michigan’s finest winery, Black Star Farms is a must visit for anyone who is searching for state-of-the-art facilities to discover wine and appreciate great scenery. The bold design of the tasting room is impressive and a fine environment to savor the great selection it has to offer. Despite being a relative newcomer, founded on its 160 acres (65ha) in 1997, Black Star’s wines have twice been served at the White House. They are a true celebration of what this region has to offer.

Mawby Vineyards and Winery

Winery
Map View

The sparkling wine on offer at Larry Mawby’s is big on personality and extremely popular in the state of Michigan. With over 800 acres (324ha) of vineyards, wine has been produced here since 1978, making it the second-oldest winery in the region. It is rare that sparkling wine is the main focus of a vineyard in North America, but Mawby insists that he makes the best. Many people sampling agree and the customer service on site is certainly as dynamic as the wine itself.

Chateau Chantal Winery and Inn

Winery
Map View
Michigan, MI, Mich, Upper Midwest, Traverse City, Old Mission Peninsula, Chateau Chantal, vineyard, vineyards, winery, plant, grape, agritourism, agri
© Jeffrey Isaac Greenberg 6+ / Alamy Stock Photo

In the most romantic of settings on the Old Mission Peninsula with incredible views of Lake Michigan, Chateau Chantal is the place to head not just for a day trip, but also for an overnight stay in a European-style estate. It is as much an escape from the real world as a winery, with bed and breakfast as well as a choice of fantastic wines. Once evening falls and the hubbub of the winery falls away, guests of the B&B can relax in tranquility and enjoy a few glasses in one of many secluded areas, including a fire pit.

Shady Lane Cellars

Winery
Map View

Covering over 150 acres (61ha), Shady Lane Cellars, on the Leelanau Peninsula, embraces a holistic approach to making wine and prides itself in defying the reputation that Michigan does not produce quality reds. These estate grounds are impressive to relax in as you take in the dramatic views from the elegant tasting area. There is sometimes live music and yard games to have fun with and it’s the perfect place to stop on a summer’s day if you are on the local TART bike trail.

2 Lads Winery

Winery
Map View

Rest assured that this winery on the tip of the Old Mission Peninsula is no stuffy Old World winery. The 2 Lads wish to convey their New World agenda and they do that as soon as you set eyes on their contemporary building in glass and steel that greets you upon arrival. It believes that its mission to farm with sustainable energy is not only a process in being ecologically friendly but also a means to produce better wine. Each tasting is paired with a food plate in a room with unbelievable views.

Mari Vineyards

Winery
Map View
Sign for Mari vineyards on Old Mission Peninsula, Traverse City, Michigan. Owned by Marty Latina of Mystery of Oak Island TV series.
© Kirk Hewlett / Alamy Stock Photo

Employing its unique nella serra greenhouse growing technique, Mari Vineyards is doing its bit to push forward the Michigan wine scene. It already went against the grain by attempting to grow European grapes in the North American soil on this peninsula. Set within what could be only described as a castle of a tasting room, it is one of the new wineries in town and likes to consider itself non-traditional in a region that is making its global challenge on the establishment.

These recommendations were updated on July 31, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.