Page 72 - Visitors Guide 18
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The most important wine pairing on your visit just might be grapes and Leelanau County, which provides ideal soil and climate for varieties that thrive near the 45th Parallel.
Look around. Breathe. Sip.
Your wine tour has of cially begun. Your experiences will vary.
Just as some of the world’s best wines are actually blends of  ne varitals, Leelanau County provides a blend of
beautiful setting.
Dan Matthies and his wife,
Lucie, own Chateau Fontaine Winery in Centerville Township. They started growing grapes in 1987 when wines that weren’t imported needed a California mailing address to be worthy of discussion.
Today he makes a passionate spokesperson for Leelanau’s wine industry, which lies halfway between the North Pole and the Equator.
“The 45th parallel runs through some of the  nest
grape country in the world. Lucy and I have been all over France. and every time we come back here and go to the top of the hill at the winery and look around and we say, ‘My God, it’s the same as Burgundy (France).”
Credit goes to the forces of geography for Leelanau’s looks and fertility.
“Leelanau is a unique growing region that is unlike any other due to the massive water of Lake Michigan
that moderates our climate,
allowing us to grow wine grapes and other agriculture that would not typically thrive in our cool climate,” Matthies said. “Glaciers left us dark, sandy loam soils. Along with stones and rocks. So we
have all the right soils that were brought and left by the glaciers.”
Matthies recalls a Michigan State University professor who decades ago investigated the county’s grape-growing potential.
(Continued on Page 74)
Releasing Peninsula’s vineyard potential
tour ingredients sought by wine connoisseurs and  rst-time consumers alike.
Leelanau brings to the table a plethora of locally owned wineries in an incomparably
Leelanau Visitors Guide 2018

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