Elevated Taste: Wineries That Go Above & Beyond
Written by Josh Veal. Photo: Black Star Winery.

There are more than 200 wineries in Michigan, and thanks to the climate provided by the eponymous great lake, nearly all of them are on the west side of the state. 

Going back to the 18th Century, wine has been a part of our history and industry. With a similar latitude to France, large sloping hills and the lake effect weather, we’re in a great spot to make great vino.

Beyond the liquid itself, we’re blessed with dozens of excellent wine tasting rooms across the state that offer stunning views and unique experiences.

While we can’t quite cover all 200 wineries here, we can point you to some of our favorites, along with a few elevated, VIP ways to enjoy your trip, going beyond the typical tasting.

Black Star Winery
10844 E. Revold Road, Suttons Bay

Black Star are known as one of the best wineries and the Midwest, thanks to a stunning 160-acre vineyard tucked into the beautiful countryside of the Leelanau Peninsula, serving up intentional, elevated food and award-winning wines. There are a number of special experiences here, including The Inn, with its bed-and-breakfast style amenities; estate and wine tours that visit the vineyard, inn, centennial barn and wine cave; and progressive wine & food tastings that also involve a short tour and behind-the-scenes look at the VIP Barrel Room. Good luck choosing just one!

St. Julian 
716 S. Kalamazoo St., Paw Paw

With six tasting rooms around the state, you’re never far from St. Julian, which makes their wine club one of the best around. Join for complimentary tastings and limited edition wines shipped directly to you at a discount price, stay for access to events like Wine Club 101, where you’ll enjoy a free guided tasting exclusive to members that goes deeper than your typical visit.

Petoskey Farms
3720 Atkins Rd., Petoskey

If you’re heading up to Petoskey or even across the bridge, you should make a stop at Petoskey Farms, a gorgeous 22-acre property overlooking rolling hills and a lavender farm, which the winery uses to make various products including lavender oil! It’s a unique addition to the vineyard, along with seasonal wood-fired pizza served up in the summer.

Mari Vineyards
8175 Center Road, Traverse City

Mari knows how to entertain. Drop-in production floor and wine cave tours? Check. Private guided tours and tastings in the cave lounge? Check. Bespoke experiences making special use of the Founders Room or wine caves? Check. Not to mention events like live music and Sunrise Yoga in the Vines.

Tabor Hill & Round Barn
185 Mt Tabor Rd, Buchanan  /  10983 Hills Rd, Baroda

Just a short trail away from each other are sister wineries Tabor Hill and Round Barn. You can make the trek in less than a mile, if you choose, or go on a little adventure and stroll through the 3.5 miles of trails looping through woods and vineyards—all with a drink in hand! If you’re hungry, consider the Friday Tabor For Two, a delicious deal. If you want to stick around, check out their gorgeous vacation rentals, such as the Estate House just steps away from Round Barn.

Chateau Chantal
15900 Rue de Vin, Traverse City

Chateau Chantal, beyond having a beautiful estate, is an excellent destination for foodies. events frequently, such as the Mother’s Day Bubbly Brunch on May 12, the Blazing & Glazing Wine Dinner on May 25, and even cooking classes multiple times a month. While you’re up north, consider staying at the B&B, filled with cozy rooms and spacious suites, each offering views of the vineyard and freshwater bays.

Hudsonville Winery
3768 Chicago Dr, Hudsonville

Hudsonville Winery is not your typical winery experience, and we mean that in the best way possible. If you’re not into the bougie VIP stuff, you can come here for a wide variety of tasty wines in a casual setting, served right alongside Pike 51 Brewing’s beer, plus hard seltzer. This is an especially good idea in the summer, when you can beat the heat with their Polar Pouch frozen wine slushies!

Robinette’s Apple Haus & Winery
3142 4 Mile Rd. NE, Grand Rapids

Robinette’s is not your typical winery either, as it’s also, primarily, an orchard! But serving wine has been part of their business since 2006, and we here at Revue have taken part many times. The tasting room in a cozy old barn is full of interesting flavors, including quite a few fruit wines, mulled wine and even a chocolate wine. Plus, you get to keep the glass when you leave, and can bring it back next trip for half-off the tasting.

Cody Kresta Vineyard & Winery
45727 27th St., Mattawan

This small family winery specializes in hand-crafted wines produced at a vintage 1882 homestead in southern Michigan, using only grapes from the Lake Michigan Shore Appellation. Cody Kresta is beloved for its cozy vibes, natural beauty and dry wines. They also host tons of events throughout the year, plus behind-the-scenes tours—get in touch to visit the underground barrel room!