Hickory Creek Winery – Michigan

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We really enjoy going to new wineries! The ones that are just starting out  usually don’t have all the frills, no neon lights, the huge gift shop, etc.; the wine is their main focus so they try even harder to give you their best! And that is the story here at Hickory Creek Winery in Buchanan, Michigan. What you see and taste is what you get so get ready for some very good wines! Eric and Jayne Wagner are the new owners of Hickory Creek Winery which they reopened just over a year ago. It seems like a short time but they have already been making a name for themselves by producing great wines and getting involved in local food and wine events.

From the road, the little farmhouse and barn surrounded by vineyards look fairly unpretentious. A gravel driveway brings you up to the newly painted red barn, now turned into a tasting room and production facility. There are also a couple umbrella tables and chairs for relaxation outdoors after you have tasted some wines. We went inside and met our wine consultants Rosemary & Jeff who were patiently waiting at the tasting bar as we took pictures and browsed around. You can view the oak barrels and production facility from the tasting room which all adds to the ambience of this winery. Rosemary and Jeff gave us some great information about Hickory Creek Winery and told us that the work that went into the winery is all a labor of love. Mike DeSchaaf is the winemaker here and he has years of experience producing wines in this area. All the grapes they use are grown exclusively in the Lake Michigan Shore appellation. So using the types of grapes that grow best in this AVA is what gives a regional flavor to the wines that are produced here.

We were enticed enough as it is so we were ready to taste some Hickory Creek wines! They have a nice menu that has wines from dry to sweet, red and white, some fruit, and even an ice wine as well! For those who enjoy dry white wines, you have just found your heaven since there are an abundant amount of dry white wines and a dry red or two. We tried most of the wines and were very impressed since we honestly liked them all! The Riesling had lots of green apple, citrus, and honeysuckle on the palate. The Zero Oak Chardonnay was very floral on the nose but flavors of fresh citrus and stone fruits abound! Our favorites were the 2009 Gewurtztraminer which had a rose petal, lychee nose but exotic flavors of passion fruit and spice with a long, dry finish! We also loved the dry Cabernet Franc Rose’ which had a fresh strawberry nose and flavors of melon, bing cherry, and long mineral finish. And our favorite red was the 2009 Pinot Noir. This dry Pinot Noir had a bright cherry nose with a hint of herb. On the palate, lush cranberry, Montmorency cherries, white pepper, and a light herbal flavor on the finish. Wonderful!

We bought our wine and sat outside to take more photos and to view the vineyard. This is a must stop for those who enjoy good wines and want to learn about this wine region at a more relaxing speed. For more information, check out their website at www.HickoryCreekWinery.com. There you can find out about any upcoming events, directions, and hours of the winery. Hickory Creek is also on Facebook if you would like to check for updates there. We had a very nice time here and the wines are superb. We come out to Southwest Michigan 2-3 times a year and we plan to be back to Hickory Creek Winery this fall 2012! Cheers!

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