Michigan By The Bottle Tasting Room includes representation from all over the state, including the Lake Michigan Shore Wine Trail, Leelanau Peninsula, Old Mission Peninsula, Southeast Michigan Pioneer Wine Trail, Thumbs Up Wine Trail, Bayview Wine Trail and beyond. All of our partner wineries are family-run operations – some of which have existed for generations – that use their own estate-grown fruit and/or locally sourced fruit to produce high-quality wines. Each partner winery has its own story to tell; take a peek at their individual backgrounds, philosophies and specialties.
Located in Cedar, on Michigan’s Leelanau Peninsula, Bel Lago Winery gets its name from the Italian term for “beautiful lake.” It’s a fitting name, since Bel Lago wines are made from grapes grown in family-owned vineyards overlooking Lake Leelanau and Lake Michigan. Bel Lago was founded in 1987 by Domenic, Ruth, and Amy Iezzoni and Charles Edson, who serves as the winemaker. The emphasis at Bel Lago has been on quality, with an unwavering commitment to excellence. As winegrowers, Edson and the Iezzonis believe firmly in the old adage “the wines are made in the vineyard.” Bel Lago wines are based on the production of quality fruit from select clones of a very unique varietal mix.
Blue Water Winery – About a decade ago, after studying with industry experts at the University of California to gain the core knowledge of commercial wine making, Blue Water Winery owners Connie Currie and Steve Velloff left the busy life of software executives in downtown Chicago and literally “bought the farm.” They planted a 10-acre vineyard near the shores of Lake Huron for the “lake effect,” and due to its proximity to a customer base. The vineyard is now eight years old, very vigorous, and producing abundant high quality wine grapes, including Chardonnay, Cab Franc, Riesling, Pinot Noir, Gewürztraminer, Zweigelt, Grüner Veltliner and more. Blue Water’s philosophy is to create a great product from locally grown grapes, and they accomplish this with patience, practice and passion.
Finding a piece of Leland Bluestone on the shore of Lake Michigan is finding a rare treasure of nature. Blustone wines are inspired by these unanticipated moments in life.
Our story started 20 years ago visiting Leland as a family for the first time. The simplicity and beauty of the “tucked away” secret that is Leelanau has always been what we treasure most about the area. There is a connection to the land found only here amongst the lakes, dunes, hills, and sunlit fields and our dream to start Blustone was born out of that. Our namesake is reflective of that connection and the celebration of life which we hope to inspire with every sip of wine.
Walter and Eileen Brys, proprietors of Brys Estate Vineyard and Winery on Old Mission Peninsula in Traverse City, Michigan, planted the first of 40,000 vines in 2001 and opened the doors of their tasting room in 2005. Spanning 91 acres, Brys Estate is is one of the largest contiguous winery estates on Old Mission Peninsula. Today there are eight different varietals planted at Brys Estate: Merlot, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Pinot Blanc and Gewürztraminer.
Burgdorf’s Winery is a mid-Michigan “garagiste” winery located in Haslett. It was opened in 2005 by Deb and Dave Burgdorf, who have over 38 years of artisan winemaking experience. Grapes and other fruits are either estate grown or hand-selected from local Michigan farms. The entire production of our award winning wines occurs on site – from juicing, fermentation, bottling and labeling to sales and distribution – making Burgdorf’s Winery, truly, a Michigan winery, through and through.
Chateau Aeronautique Winery was founded on the ideals of creating fine wines from Michigan grapes and offering those wines for tasting in a beautiful, relaxing setting. The theme of the winery is the airpark lifestyle: flying, vintage airplanes, and living in a home with a hangar on a grass runway surrounded by forests. The models for the winery are the chateau wineries of Bordeaux, France. The reason for the winery is a passion for viniculture: the aromas of the winery, the mystique of the wine cellar, and the pleasures of the tasting room.
Chateau Chantal is a 65-acre estate located on Old Mission Peninsula in one of the most scenic areas of the Great Lakes. It is a unique destination that combines vineyards & winery, a bed and breakfast, winding roads, fresh air and kind company, all of which serve to create a retreat in Northern Hospitality. We offer tours, wine tasting, seasonal entertainment, year-round lodging and more than 35 hand-crafted wines, all of which are in keeping with the area’s growing reputation for exceptional hospitality, fine foods and superb wines! The chateau sits high atop a ridge near the northern end of the Old Mission Peninsula, offering stunning views of Lake Michigan’s Grand Traverse Bays. You’ll find a wide variety of wines from very dry to sparkling and sweet, produced from the same vineyard blocks.
Chateau de Leelanau Vineyard and Winery is located just north of Traverse City, offering a variety of wines and hard cider made from fruit grown on our farms in beautiful Leelanau County. With generations of farming history, we bring our love for Northern Michigan into every aspect of Chateau de Leelanau. Our wines and ciders are made from fruit grown in our family’s vineyards and orchards to ensure a true taste of Leelanau County in every sip.
Cody Kresta is a small, family winery specializing in hand-crafted wines produced at our vintage 1882 homestead in southern Michigan. We are dedicated to sharing quality wines with our friends, family and community while helping to preserve our rural countryside. All grapes used in our wines are grown in the Lake Michigan Shore Appellation, including those from our own estate vineyard. Our name, Cody Kresta, was created to honor Cody, our beloved golden retriever and David’s Croatian heritage. David is a third-generation grape grower nurturing the tradition passed on to him by his Croatian-born grandparents, Joseph and Anna.
Domaine Berrien Cellars is located in Berrien County, in the Lake Michigan Shore Viticultural Area, and produces all estate wines. Set on an 80-acre farm, Domaine Berrien is a family operation, with 42 acres currently planted in grapes. Opened in 2001, the winery offers a quaint tasting room overlooking the wine production facility. All of our handcrafted wines are made on-site from our own handpicked, estate-grown grapes. We grow 21 different grape varieties and make 22 different varietals and blends. Our motto is: “High quality grapes into high quality wine!”
Hawthorne Vineyards is a friendly boutique winery passionate about making finely crafted, small production, quality wines. The pristine acreage, nestled high on a ridge on Northern Michigan’s Old Mission Peninsula, offers a peaceful and serene destination. We offer daily wine samplings from our elegant tasting room or outdoor patio while enjoying the spectacular views of East and West Grand Traverse Bays.
Laurentide Winery – located in lovely Lake Leelanau, along the 45th Parallel in Northwestern Michigan – is a small boutique winery, specializing in cool-climate wines. Laurentide was named in honor of the last great ice sheet that receded 10,000 years ago from the upper tier of the North American continent. At that time, the Leelanau Peninsula was exposed, and rocks and fossils from the 350 million-year-old ancient sea floor began formulating the soil that sustains our vines today, contributing to the unique terroir of the region. We started growing vitis vinifera on our cherry farm in 2006; we now have six varietals flourishing on about 12 acres, located on sweeping vistas almost 900 feet above sea level and about 1 mile from Lake Michigan. We are dry farmed, with high-density planting, and associate with the most professional and knowledgeable experts at all levels and all times on the journey from soil to bottle. Our mission is to grow the best grapes that can be expressed as the best wine.
Left Foot Charley is a winery like no other. In lieu of the single estate model, LFC is a collection of grape and apple growers located throughout Northern Michigan, dedicated to growing fruit for our wine and cider. Located in the urban setting of the former Traverse City State Hospital campus – known as The Village – LFC creates an array of balanced white wine, red wine and hard cider. Every bottle tells the story of the farm, the vintage and the winemaker’s dream of sharing it all with you.
Inspired by childhood memories of pressing grapes with his Sicilian grandfather, Ralph Stabile fulfilled his lifelong dream of owning a winery by founding Mackinaw Trail Winery with his wife, Laurie, in 2004. Originally based in Manistique, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, the Stabile family has since constructed a state-of-the-art headquarters in Petoskey, with offsite tasting rooms remaining in Manistique and Mackinaw City. Ralph’s son, Dustin, who studied viticulture at Michigan State University, now runs operations in the wine production facility, and the winery has taken more than 50 medals and six Best of Class awards since moving into the new digs. It is currently one of the fastest-growing wineries in Michigan.
Peninsula Cellars is a family run winery located on the Old Mission Peninsula, just north of Traverse City. Our philosophy toward wine making has always been very minimalistic, allowing the regional expression of the fruit to come through. For six generations, the Kroupa family has been working the land on Old Mission, growing crops that thrive in the distinct microclimate. Peninsula Cellars was established in 1994, and has specialized in white wines since the beginning. Although white wine is the focus, Peninsula Cellars has stayed true to their roots, and produces three different cherry wines, as well as an apple wine. Rounding out the product line are several red wines, including Merlot, Cabernet Franc and several blended reds.
Sandhill Crane Vineyards’ award-winning wines are all made on their premises with local grapes and other fruits. The family-run winery includes a tasting room, café featuring fresh local ingredients and small banquet room. Committed to their community and the environment, Sandhill Crane Vineyards makes a number of wines that benefit local charities.
Crafting vibrant cool climate wines on Michigan’s Leelanau Peninsula, we invite you to live, love and discover wine with Shady Lane Cellars. We focus on crafting wines that exhibit both elegance of structure and intensity of aroma and flavor. At Shady Lane Cellars, we are guided by the nature of our vineyards and the fruit they produce. We respect that every wine is a product of a thousand details, all of which need to be governed by the philosophy of reaching toward and developing an expression of place. We believe our vineyards and our team, all of which is part of our “terroir,” make Shady Lane Cellars the place to achieve this vision.
At Verterra Winery, our goal is simple. Begin with high, sloped property with the right soil types. Then, plant the varietals, clones and rootstocks that have proven to produce great fruit in our area, are sought after by consumers and tourists, and make wines that we like. Next, plant and farm these grapes with an eye towards the highest possible quality and sustainability. We are committed to going the extra mile with our vineyard practices, appropriate yet minimal chemical application, small yields, hand pruning, tying and harvesting, and closely evaluating fruit quality and timing harvest based on both science and taste. Once our fruit is harvested, we waste no time in getting the fresh, cool fruit to the crush pad to transform it into Michigan's finest wines.
Wyncroft/Marland is a small family-owned estate winery located in the glacial moraine hills of Southwest Michigan. Our proximity to Lake Michigan provides a unique micro-climate, perfect for growing many of the noble vinifera grape varieties from which the world’s greatest wines are made. James Lester, our winemaker and owner, has been growing vines and making wine in Michigan for more than 30 years. Wyncroft wines are crafted from grapes grown in our estate’s vineyards. Marland wines are crafted from grapes grown in our neighbor’s vineyards. All Wyncroft Marland wines are handcrafted at the estate winery from 100% Michigan-grown vinifera grapes.