Wineries in SW Michigan's Lake
France is fine, California is cool, but if
you want great wines, you can find them right in your own
backyard. Lake Chapin Shores is located in the American Vitacultural
Area (AVA) of Southwest Michigan that boasts nearly a dozen
wineries and 10,000 acres of grape vineyards among rolling
hills and inland waters. Heres a sampling of some of
the local wineries who offer tastings and tours. Some even
have "pick your own" fruits and berries. You can
all on the official Lake
Michigan Shore Wine Trail map. And if you look
closely, you'll be able to point out the location of your new
lakefront home in Southwest Michigan
on the map to your friends.
One of our favorites, and not just because
it's one of the closest, is
The Round Barn Winery
in Baroda (800-716-WINE). We love its
relaxed atmosphere, great people, and especially the round
barn. They've recently upgraded all the grounds, walkways and
ample parking areas and added more outdoor seating overlooking
the vineyards. They even have a couple sets of "bags", the
popular beanbag tossing game, to enjoy while sipping some of
their wines, hand crafted beers or their increasingly popular
Divine vodka out on the grass next to the beer tasting
building. All this while some of the best music (as rated by
'boomers' and the younger generation alike) plays in the
background. If you only have time for one stop to a local
winery, this is the one!
“Jammin’ in the Vineyard” at Round Barn Winery is a party every weekend. Each Saturday and Sunday starting Memorial Day Weekend, there are free concerts. Check their website for the most up to date schedule. Come hang out and enjoy world-class wines, spirits or micro-brews, while sitting in the newly completed open-air, live music stage adjacent to the Beer Garden. Along with an impressive lineup, you'll be able to grab a fresh grilled burger, brat, hotdog or chicken sandwich at the Round Barn Cafe to complete a perfect vineyard picnic!
Some of our other favorite local wineries include:
Lemon Creek Winery & Fruit Farm,
Berrien Springs, 269-471-1321
Lemon Creek Winery presents their annual Wine & Art Festival every Memorial Day Weekend. Each fall, Lemon Creek holds its Annual Harvest Festival.
Lemon Creek Winery is located at 533 E. Lemon Creek Rd. Berrien Springs. Exhibits open at 12:00 p.m. and close at 6:00 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. Admission is free.
Contessa Wine Cellar, Coloma, 269-468-5534
Berrien Cellars & Winery,
Berrien Springs, 269-473-WINE
Fenn Valley Vineyard &
Wine Cellar, Baroda,
Free Run Cellars, Union Pier, 269-469-9443
The newest winery to call southwest Michigan home is Gravity. It is located in the town of Baroda, less than 15 minutes from Lake Chapin Shores. Gravity describes itself as follows: 'We do our tastings a little different. Our wines are served by the flight and each wine is paired with either gourmet chocolate or cheese. We have lots of seating indoors and outdoors overlooking the lake and vineyards for you to enjoy this unique experience!'
Hickory Creek Winery, Buchanan
Vista Vineyards & Winery,
St. Julian Winery, Paw Paw, 800-732-6002
Tabor Hill Winery & Restaurant, Buchanan,
Warner Vineyards Winery,
Paw Paw, 800-756-5357
The Journeyman Distillery is also new and is located in the town of Three Oaks. 269-820-2050. They offer handcrafted artisan spirits with a focus on whiskey. A light, eclectic and preservative-free menu is available in the tasting room. Check the website for information on upcoming events including live entertainment and art fairs.
For a really fun time with a small or large group, consider
taking one of the
Fruitful Vine Tours
(269-978-8777) for fun, expertly guided tours of wine country.
Fruitful Vine is the first and only official winery tour
operator in Southwest Michigan. They have "Hop On" tours or
you can reserve and rent an entire deluxe 14 passenger Limo-Coach with
room to stand. Leave the driving to them and the fun times to
There are also regular limo services available in the area,
Limousine & Sedan (866-925-4667).
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