A few weeks ago, we sat around a table talking about all of the things in Michigan that we have to do before summer ends. I attempted to convince friends- who just moved here- that there was so much to enjoy. So, we planned a trip to prove it. 

First trip: Michigan Vineyards

Something about being 'up north' makes you love Michigan so much more - the quaint fruit stands on the side of the road, open land, friendly people, locally owned restaurants, small boutiques, driving along the deep blue bay of FRESH water...it's refreshing. 

Our plan was to try all 7 of the vineyards on the Traverse City peninsula, but by 6 pm we had only finished 4. (Then discovered an unplanned 5th). What's the rush when you have a view like this?

We hung out on the porches, talked to the workers, met some locals, and took deep breaths of gratefulness. I think, "ahh this is SO fun {insert clapping hands}," was said at least 110 times.

3 of the girls are new to Michigan (from LA, DC and Maryland), so there were lots of 'ohhhhs' and 'aaahhs' at each stop. Annie and I (Michigan veterans) were happy that our newbies were loving their new home. There's a reason there's a song about summertime in northern Michigan...dontcha know (just teasing, we don't really say that.)

We loved how each place had a completely different feel.

Bower's Harbor Vineyard felt like we were sitting on our own back porch, just hanging out with the dog. 

2 Lad's had an incredible view, but we weren't sold on the aesthetic. A little too much of a  'research lab'  look.

I suppose we shouldn't judge a book by it's cover, since we ended up walking out with a box of their pinot.

Chateau Chantal was a little too "touristy" and busy for us. It felt too commercialized rather than personalized (I sound like a bad marketing campaign). Although the experience wasn't the best, we could sit on the porch all day long:

It's safe to say that Brys Estates was an all around favorite. We all wanted to be best friends with, Eric, our server, and we walked out with a box of Riesling - so I suppose he did his job well. 

Since we thought all of the tasting rooms closed at 6 and it was already well after, we ventured to a place I vaguely remembered from years ago. It was called Bowers Harbor Inn back then, and there was a tale of it being haunted. 

To our surprise, it has since been changed to a winery and brewery. 
It is, however, still said to be haunted by Genevive. 

We walked around the property, sat on the grass, watched the sailboats in the bay as the sun came down and listened to country music = bliss.

{self timer mishaps- blame Genevive}

We spent the evening wandering around downtown, indulging in sushi and getting free cupcakes because we stood outside the "closed" sign until someone graciously let us in. We tried not to make our drool that obvious, but, hey, no shame.

I've been "Cheering" a lot lately, but there's just a lot to celebrate and be thankful for. And honestly, how else to end  a post about a vineyard getaway without clicking together glasses and saying "Cheers!!" 

I know, now you want to go because it's a great little getaway. This was the best map that I had found of all of the Vineyards. You can find the info at this link: Peninsula Wine Trail


  1. Oh my gosh your photos of the wineries are amazing! I go up to TC quite often to time races & for mini-vacations. I was there just last weekend & am going up at least 3 more times before the end of 2012. We actually ate lunch at the Jolly Pumpkin at that Bowers Harbor Inn place on Sunday. :) I LOVE going to wineries up there. I love wine in general, we went to San Fransisco for our honeymoon so that we could get some wine tasting in. I've probably been to every winery on both Leelanau & Old Mission at least once :) Looks like you girls had a lot of fun!

    1. Small world :) Is the Jolly Pumpkin there different than the one in A2? We didn't look at the menu. Next we will need to go to all of the Leelanau ones :)!


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