This week, we continue our trend of out-of-state Michigan wine lovers with Janet Rozycki of South Bend, Indiana! Janet first discovered Michigan wine via a friend's dinner party, but her interest in Mitten State vino has since made her a frequent visitor to the trails here, especially Lake Michigan Shore. Check out Janet's favorite stops along the way.
"I believe my first Michigan wine was from St. Julian, at a friend’s dinner party. I do not remember the specific wine I had that day; she served a variety of St. Julian wines, her favorite at the time. But that is when I discovered Michigan wineries and that there was more than sweet wine, which was all I had been drinking up to that point."
What was the first Michigan winery you ever visited?
"Tabor Hill Winery. I went there with some friends for dinner, years ago when the place was much smaller. I enjoyed the wine tasting and the one on one attention we received from everyone there. I was happy I had found another winery to purchase wine from. The food was delicious too."
What's your favorite Michigan wine?
"I’ve been expanding my wine tasting from all sweet to semi-sweet to dry, and I am finding that I really do like some of the dry wines. So as of right now, one of my recent favorites is a wine from Free Run, and it is Rosso. It is 'classic Gewürz, nose of honey and rose petal, hints of melon with a lingering spicy finish.' The aromas are well defined. I like a wine I can drink by itself or with a meal, and with this one I do."
What's your favorite Michigan winery?
"I don’t have one favorite; there are several I return to time after time. I like that Round Barn offers an array of options, such as seating, wine tasting, food/snacks on the weekends and beer. After wine tasting, it is nice to be able to sit down with a glass of your favorite wine and enjoy it. Not all wineries offer places to take a seat."
Have you ever attended a Michigan wine event?
"I usually attend Lemon Creek’s Father’s Day party, and believe I like it because it was one of the first I ever attended. This year, Round Barn’s Jammin’ in the Vineyard parties are fun too. I love to drink wine, and my significant other likes wine but prefers beer, and we can get both at Round Barn."
Do you have a favorite Michigan wine trail?
"We like the Lake Michigan (Shore) Wine Trail. There are several wineries within a short distance and plenty of variety. A group of girls have been doing our own wine tour for three years now. We rent a van, get a friend to do the driving and map out about five or six wineries to stop at. We all bring snacks and we allow time between wineries to enjoy the snacks. We make a day of it once a year in the late fall and we have a great time."
What's the most surprising Michigan wine you've tried?
"A late harvest wine from Lemon Creek called Northern Lights. The first time I tasted it, the flavors were intense and it wasn’t nearly as sweet as I thought it would be. I love it really chilled."
If you could sit down for a glass of wine with any Michigan winemaker, it would be ...
"I don’t believe I could pick just one. But if I had to at this very moment it would have to be Karma Vista. The names of the wines are as interesting as the flavors of their wines. I thoroughly enjoy several of them, from Pink Side of the Moon to Watusi Red to the Stone Temple Pinot."
"Michigan wines are delicious, reasonably priced, and there is an extensive range of quality wines to suit everyone’s tastes!
"The first winery I ever visited was Oliver Winery in Bloomington, Indiana. It was years ago (28 years ago to be exact) when there were few wineries in the area. Some of my favorite wines from Oliver were and still are the Beanblossom Blush, Gewurztraminer, and their Pinot Grigio. I mail-ordered my wine from them for several years, until I began discovering Michigan wineries."
About the photo ...
"This photo was taken November 2011, 'the girls' on our annual wine trail trip! I am the one in brown on the far left. The photo was taken outside of Tabor Hill."
Interested in being the MBTB Michigan Wine Lover of the Week? E-mail us and request a questionnaire!