Where to eat, sip, sleep, and play in Michigan wine country. Photo by thebittenword.com.
DAY ONE: Detroit to Traverse City, 267 miless
After spending the night at Detroit’s design-focused inn Honor and Folly, pop by Astro Coffee, above, for the aioli-topped egg sandwich and a cup of third-wave coffee. You’ll be on I-75 North for four hours before you reach Traverse City. Stop at the Little Fleet, a group of food trucks, and buy a pulled pork taco from Roaming Harvest. Drive 20 minutes on M-37 to the tip of Old Mission, the smaller of the area’s two peninsulas. Here you’ll find the Old Mission Point Lighthouse. Go to Old Mission General Store for penny candy and nibbles for a picnic at nearby Haserot Beach. Eat dinner at the Cook’s House, but save room for a slice of Grand Traverse Pie Company’s cherry pie. Stay in one of the three suites at the Tesoro Inn.
DAY TWO: Traverse City to Suttons Bay, 27 miles
Head north on M-37 and you’ll see the glass-fronted tasting room of 2 Lads Winery perched on a hill. Ten minutes south is Peninsula Cellars, which is located in a converted 1890s schoolhouse. A flight of five wines costs $2.50. It takes 30 minutes to reach Leelanau Peninsula on the western edge of Grand Traverse Bay. In Suttons Bay, go to Martha’s Leelanau Table for lunch; try the cherry chicken salad. Rent kayaks from Sunset Sports or catch a show at the Bay Theater, then stay at the Inn at Black Star Farms, an eight-room inn with a creamery, distillery, and winery.
DAY THREE: Suttons Bay to Glen Arbor, 31 miles
Drive north on M-22 and look for a barn with a tandem bike hanging above the door. At Tandem Ciders, sample artisanal ciders such as the Pretty Penny, a blend of more than 30 varieties of cider and heirloom apples. Drive south to L. Mawby, which is known for its sparkling wines. Continue 50 minutes south on M-22 to the beautifully wild Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.