Explore the Wineries of the Midwest

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The Midwest is the crossroads of America, a hub for agriculture, industry, and artisan goods. Though rarely boasting of itself, this region is home to hardworking individuals creating some of the finest products that the U.S. has to offer. One of those quiet, yet astounding, industries is winemaking.

Nestled near the Great Lakes are some of the country’s finest vineyards, where passionate individuals exercise skill and artistry as they harvest, process, and ferment the grapes, resulting in a diverse range of world-class wines. As part of your visit, you can experience the fruits of their labor. Many vineyards offer tastings, tours, and opportunities to meet the teams that are in charge of crafting such superb products. Here are a few of the extraordinary wineries located in the Midwest.

Petoskey, MI

Situated on the crystal-clear waters of Little Traverse Bay, Petoskey is a vibrant and exciting retreat in northern Michigan. Known for hiking, beaches, and shopping, this city is also home to first-rate vineyards and wineries. One of the newest is Walloon Lake Winery, a family-owned business that’s garnered praise for its high-quality wines, knowledgeable staff, and gorgeous tasting room. The tasting room is built with local wood in the style of a rustic farmhouse, lending a true northern feel that extends to the patio overlooking the vineyards.

Looking for wine with a view? Paradise awaits at Petoskey Farms Vineyard & Winery. This northern treasure features an outdoor covered patio that allows you to take in 22 acres of scenic vineyards, rolling hills, and family farms. Though beautiful any time of year, fall turns the area into a stunning display of color as the trees begin to change. Stop by, order a wine flight, and let your worries slip away as you enjoy the beauty of Michigan’s wine country.

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Traverse City, MI

The crown jewel of Michigan’s wine region, Traverse City is situated on the same 45th parallel as the famous wine regions of France and Italy. This area features award-winning vineyards and stunning views, as well as the opportunity for wine tours. Try out Traverse City Tours and take a guided expedition through the best of what the area has to offer.

Step back in time at Brys Estate Vineyard & Winery, a 91-acre estate that’s anchored by a renovated 1890’s farmhouse. Sample small batch wines in the elegant brick and mahogany tasting room and get a glimpse of red wines aging in the vaulted barrel and cask rooms. You’ll also enjoy wine and charcuterie boards on the “Upper Deck,” where you can survey the east arm of the Grand Traverse Bay from the “Bridge Above the Vines.”

North of Traverse City is Chateau Grand Traverse, a premier winery located on Old Mission Peninsula. This destination has been family-owned and operated since its founding in 1974, when it became the first northern Michigan winery to grow European vinifera grapes. With a history of award-winning wines, Chateau Grand Traverse is proud to offer samples and tours where you’ll learn more about the wine-making process and the practices that make this wine exceptional.

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Grand Haven, MI

With a history dating back over 300 years, Grand Haven is a hub of culture and activity on the coast of Lake Michigan, just a short distance from the bustling city of Grand Rapids. Sandy beaches and a one-of-a-kind Musical Fountain are the attractions of summer, while fall brings dazzling color, family-friendly pumpkin patches, and plenty of options at the area’s tasting rooms.

Lemon Creek Winery Tasting Room offers guests the chance to sample wines from the vineyard in Berrien Springs. Relax by the fire and enjoy a glass of your favorite red or white as you observe the distinctive notes of these lauded wines.

Just a short walk away is the tasting room of 12 Corners Vineyards. This cozy shop is located in the center of town, nestled between the Grand River and Central Park. Take a break from the day’s activities and chat with the knowledgeable staff who are more than happy to guide you in choosing the perfect samples. Each personalized tasting experience includes complimentary chocolate and a wine glass to take home as a memento.

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Geneva-on-the-Lake, OH

Nestled on the shores of Lake Erie, just an hour away from Cleveland, this quaint village is surrounded by some of the finest vineyards in Ohio. One of those is Debonne Vineyards, an estate winery founded in 1972. The scenic grounds are home to a charming chalet that opens onto an outdoor patio with plenty of seating, perfect for enjoying live music, which takes place on a regular basis. Tour the wine cellars and sample from a selection of over 25 different wines, including Debonne’s renowned ice wine. This superb creation is crafted from grapes that have frozen on the vine, a process that lends itself to explosive flavor and sweetness.

Also located in the Grand River Valley is Laurentia Vineyard and Winery, an establishment that prides itself on an inviting atmosphere. Step into the tasting room and understand the meaning of comfort. This incredible structure was inspired by a Colorado log cabin and is complete with a four-sided stone fireplace and an open terrace. Be sure to head to the basement wine cellar, where you can sample from a stunning tasting bar, relax at a custom designed table, and find all the wine knowledge you could ask for in the on-site library. Whether you’re here for the wine or the ambience, you won’t be disappointed.

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