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Traverse vineyards/dinner recs please

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My husband I will be traveling to Traverse for the first time Sat. We are foodies from Chicago. Which vineyards have the best wine and experience? We love white and reds...

As for dinner, we cannot decide b/w Red Ginger, Hanna, and Amical. We would like not only outstanding food (too bad Tapawingo is so far!) and atmosphere, please! Thanks so much! we are staying d/t so would prefer something walking distance.

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  1. Whites are better than reds Up North. I like Brys Estate Vineyard wines the best. Try their Pinot Gris. Chateau Chantal has the most beautiful view. For restaurants, I liked Samuels in Sutton's Bay. I went there for brunch and it was outstanding. Not walking distance from downtown TC, but you could stop there when you are tasting. Have fun!

    http://www.brysestate.com/
    http://www.chateauchantal.com/
    http://www.samuelssuttonsbay.com/inde...

    MK
    motherskitchen.blogspot.com

    1. Welcome to Traverse City. I have lived here for three years and love food. Here are my opinions on the area.

      Whites are better than reds up here due to the growing conditions. With that being said, there are a few good reds. As a local who has spent a great deal of time working with the wineries, here are the ones I would visit.

      Must visit for the wine
      www.leftfootcharley.com
      www.brysestate.com
      www.shadylanecellars.com
      www.lmawby.com
      www.blackstarfarms.com

      Visit for the view
      www.chateauchantal.com
      www.leelanaucellars.com
      www.cgtwines.com

      All three restaurants you mentioned downtown are great. You might also want to consider Trattoria Stella, not downtown but great Italian with an impressive wine list and the best atmosphere. (www.stellatc.com)

      1. For the wineries, we just drive around and try to hit all of them. You can find a map of the wineries in Michigan at www.michiganwines.com/page.php?menu=maps and clicking there takes you to the map for the Traverse/Leelenau area at www.michiganwines.com/page.php?menu_i...

        I've had great food in trips to that area. I've eaten at Hanna and enjoyed it, and at Tapawingo and absolutely loved it. If I were in that area, I'd choose Tapawingo first; it's really not all that far, and it's worth the trip. Otherwise, I'd go back to Hanna. I haven't been to Red Ginger or Amical (or Rowe Inn) so I can't make a comparison, sorry.

        You can also find lots of recommendations in the topic at www.chowhound.com/topics/413360