“My wife said ‘buy me a winery in Leelanau County,’ so I bought her a winery in Leelanau County!” exclaimed the eccentric Alan Eaker to a room full of happy tasters. There is no doubt that the Northern Michigan wine industry is booming, and the owners of Longview Winery and Vineyard are excited to be part of it.
Alan Eaker first met his wife, Linda, fifteen years ago. At that time, Alan was living in Florida while Linda lived in Michigan. The long distance relationship was difficult, but Alan encouraged Linda to take a look at the “long view.” They both had children that would soon be leaving for college, therefore freeing them up to move to a single location together. Because Linda generously took the “long view” and agreed to eventually marry Alan, he wanted to give her something in return. When he asked what she desired most, her response was to live on a farm in Leelanau County. In 2005 Longview Winery and Vineyard officially opened, adding a great tasting room to the beautiful town of Cedar.
If you want to visit Longview Winery while on a wine tour on Leelanau Peninsula, it is on the Sleeping Bear Loop Tour. Of course, you can create any wine tour that tickles your fancy and hop your way into Longview at your convenience. This quaint tasting room offers complimentary tastings and an energetic, knowledgeable staff. Adjacent to the tasting room is the Cedar Rustic Inn, owned by Aaron and Nikki Ackley. At this eatery, you can enjoy a glass of Longview wine with the “gourmet comfort food” that is served. The vegetable stir-fry is amazing and pairs perfectly with the 2011 semi-dry reisling, just so you know.
Perhaps one of the best parts about Longview winery is its location. Cedar is a gorgeous little town with so much to see and do. If you have the time, toss a round of disc golf at the Maple City disc golf course; it is one of my favorite courses in Northern Michigan. Longview is less than three miles away from this disc golf course, making it a perfect stop for wine tasting and dinner after a great day outdoors.
If you are looking for a crowd-pleasing wine, Eaker states that his 2012 Rustic White “offends the least amount of people.” But really, you might as well go to the tasting room and sample them all. Take a peak at Longview’s Facebook page to stay updated on the release of their magnificent wines and plan your visit accordingly.