Midwest Wine Country: More Ideas for a Fun Vacation

midwestRarely do we get to do everything we’d like to do while on vacation.

Eating is a good example. If we ate at every good breakfast spot, every good lunch spot and every good dinner spot suggested by friends or family members, we’d be doing nothing but eating… and setting ourselves up for lots of salads once we got home.

So when Michelle and I hit the road, we try to limit ourselves to two meals per day. It doesn’t matter which meals they are. For instance, when we were in Wisconsin, one day we had breakfast with my cousin Ruthann at one of her favorite local places, and dinner at Brett Favre’s Steakhouse in Green Bay that night — no lunch.

On this trip, we heard about several places we would have liked to visit… if only we’d had the time.

For instance, in Green Bay, we didn’t get a chance to visit Captain’s Walk Winery, which offers tours and tastings, plus an upstairs lounge and outdoor porch for lingering over a glass of wine. The on-site bistro features artisan meat and cheese trays, gourmet pizza, and cheese or chocolate fondue. And each May, Captain’s Walk hosts a Fondue Wine Festival.

Our Lambeau Field tour guide told us about The Bottle Room, which offers more than 75 wine and craft beer selections, a tapas menu and live music.

The night we stayed in Kenosha, the nice woman who checked us in told us about the Schuster Mansion in Milwaukee. It’s a bed-and-breakfast inn that hosts a six-course dinner with 12 different wines on the third Friday of each month. We’re definitely keeping that in mind for the next time we’re in the area.

Fun events are held throughout the summer in Paw Paw, Mich., including the annual Paw Paw Days and Classic Car Show this coming weekend. Each September, the Paw Paw Wine & Harvest Festival features everything from grape stomps to live music all over town.

Here’s one final word of advice: Whenever you travel, take a few minutes to peruse the display of travel brochures at your hotel, motel or B&B. Yes, you’ll encounter a good deal of information about “tourist traps,” but you may also find a brochure or two about local wineries or wine-focused local restaurants. At our B&B in St. Joseph, for instance, there was a Lake Michigan Shore Wine Trail brochure and map, as well as a Southwest Michigan Beer, Wine & Spirits brochure and map.

As I’ve noted before, no matter where you travel in America today, you’re bound to be pretty close to “wine country.”

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Posted in Editor's Journal, Our Wine Travel Log
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