6 classic fall snacks paired with West Michigan craft drinks

fall snacks paired with west michigan craft drinks

Fall is here, and there are some snacks that just taste better in this season than they do in any other. These foods have a tendency to evoke Proustian “la madeleine” moments, rooted in nostalgia for childhood autumn fun. But we aren’t all children anymore, and while that does mean there’s more space between us and our carefree pasts, it also means we are legally able to consume alcoholic craft beverages. Revel in the glory of your favorite fall snacks by pairing them with these signature West Michigan ciders, wines, beers, and spirits.

6 classic fall snacks paired with West Michigan craft drinks

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts

Hot cider and cinnamon sugar donuts is a classic combo and well worth revisiting every year when the temperature starts to drop. But if you’re looking for something a little more mature, swap out hot cider for hard cider! We recommend Virtue Cider’s “The Mitten.” The Mitten is a smooth, bourbon barrel aged hard apple cider that tastes delicious and imparts its own kind of warmth.

Baked Apples

Apples are synonymous with autumn. A day of apple picking is an essential fall activity, and you get to come home with bushels of sweet, fresh fruit. Put that fruit to use in the form of a beloved dessert. The baked apple is a simple, but delicious delicacy whose warm, gooey bites beg to be followed by a sip of smooth bourbon. May we suggest Coppercraft Distillery’s Straight Bourbon?

S’mores

Okay, s’mores are good at all times of year. But there’s something about a fall bonfire that you just don’t get in summer–a crisp breeze seasoned with crackling leaves. We think that makes the s’mores taste better. You know what makes them taste even better? Being followed with a swig of a tasty stout. We recommend Saugatuck Brewing Company’sDarker Than Your Soul.”

Roasted Autumn Squash

Roasted autumn squashes like butternut squash and acorn squash are a great way to add a touch of the harvest to your diet. We suggest pairing autumn squash dishes with Fenn Valley’s Riesling. This crisp, semi-dry white wine will bring out the sweetness in your favorite autumn squashes, however you choose to prepare them.

Hot Chocolate

For the cold, late fall days, hot chocolate warms the soul unlike any other beverage. A splash of Coppercraft Distillery’s Vodka puts a tasty adult spin on the classic drink. Top with marshmallows, whipped cream, and/or sprinkles if the child in you feels so inclined.

Popcorn

Pop some kernels over the stove in your well-seasoned popcorn maker (or just microwave a bag, if that suits you). Then sink into your comfy, fireside couch for a cozy fall night filled with movies and snuggles. We recommend picking up a growler of The Mitten Brewing Company’s West Coast Swing Red Ale to pair with this harvest-time snack. A hoppy amber is a great fall brew, and this one is one of the tastiest.

5 farm to table Saugatuck restaurants to inspire your palate

Choosing to eat locally produced food has a bevy of benefits. The most obvious being that your food is guaranteed to be fresh–none of it will have spent days traveling cross country in a truck. For that reason, eating locally is also ecofriendly, because it reduces emissions from shipping. You can experience the difference yourself at a variety of farm to table Saugatuck restaurants.

Farm to table restaurants strive to source their ingredients locally. They develop personal relationships with the people who produce them and are invested in the freshness and quality of the products they use. That means you don’t have to wonder where your food is coming from, and you get to enjoy a fresh, delicious meal you can feel good about. These are our favorite farm to table Saugatuck restaurants to support.

Experience farm to table Saugatuck

Growfarm to table saugatuck

Grow is a great spot for breakfast or brunch. Their menu is filled with inspired plates made with locally sourced ingredients, making it an obvious choice for a farm to table meal.

Everyday People Cafe

This Douglas restaurant is a long-time favorite. Its diverse menu features farm-sourced ingredients where possible. It’s a great spot for brunch or dinner, and their diverse selection of fine wines and craft beers make this cafe a must visit during your stay in the area.

farm to table saugatuckSalt of the Earth

Salt of the Earth is located in Fennville, a rich farming community. The restaurant invites visitors to “savor the bounty of the Michigan farm, beverage, and roots music communities.” If a taste of the local terroir is what you seek, Salt of the Earth is the place to go.

The Southerner

Located right on the river, The Southerner serves up great views, warm hospitality, and spicy southern inspired dishes. They source ingredients from a variety of local producers, which you can read more about on their website.

the southerner farm to table saugatuckKismet Farm Bakery

For ethically produced breads to pair with your home cooked meals or desserts to follow them up with, Kismet Farm Bakery is a must visit.  They pride themselves on using all organic dairy and fruit, sourcing them locally whenever possible. Their website proclaims: “ecovore and locavore customers can rest assured that we have made the best choices for each ingredient, in each amazing product.”

 

Shop our Saugatuck Valentine’s Day gift guide

saugatuck valentines day gift guide

If a thoughtful gift is what you seek, then locally produced goods are the way to go. Saugatuck offers a variety of shops with gifts to suit every interest. From classic (or cliché, if you’re a naysayer) to totally unique, our Saugatuck Valentine’s Day gift guide has it all. Find the perfect gift in Saugatuck!

Classic fare

Kilwin’s Chocolates of Saugatuck

You can’t go wrong with chocolates, and Kilwin’s are some of the best. This classic gift is sure to delight.

saugatuck valentines day gift guideBack to the Fuchsia

They may be thought of as cliché, but anyone who’s received a bouquet of flowers knows the joy they bring. A beautiful arrangement from Back to the Fuchsia promises to change that cliché reputation.

For the foodie

Spice & Tea Merchants

If your significant other loves to cook or drink unique teas, Spice & Tea Merchants holds the perfect gift. With fine cooking spices, high quality teas, and an assortment of related gifts, you’ll find something they’ll love.

saugatuck valentines day gift guideSaugatuck Jars

Find tasty gourmet food at Saugatuck Jars. Delicious sauces, jams, preserves and more line the shelves of this shop in convenient glass jar packaging, and they make for perfect gifts.

For the beverage connoisseur

Wine Sellers of Saugatuck

You won’t find a store with a better selection of fine wines in the area.

saugatuck valentines day gift guideSaugatuck Brewing Company

Grab a growler of some delicious, Saugatuck-made craft beer. Or pick up some swag for the SBC fan.

Coppercraft Distillery

Whether your SO is a dedicated gin-and-tonic drinker or someone who enjoys a neat whiskey, a bottle of Coppercraft’s tasty West Michigan-made spirits is sure to impress.

For the outdoorsperson

Landsharks

Outfit your explorer’s next expedition at Landsharks. With brands like Patagonia, Merrill, Smartwool, Keen and more, finding a high-quality gift your partner will love is a cinch.

Saugatuck Fishing Charters

What could be more romantic than a trip together out on the waters of Lake Michigan to catch trout and salmon? For anglers interested in an exciting trip on the water, or a brisk day on the ice in winter, a Saugatuck fishing charter could be a great gift.

For something completely unique

Saugatuck Antique Pavilion

Invite a little kismet into your gift search. The Saugatuck Antique Pavilion is a treasure trove with everything from trinkets to large pieces. Delight your significant other with a gift full of character and history.

What to do next time in Saugatuck

what to do next time in saugatuck

There are a few things that everyone does their first time in Saugatuck–and for good reason. Favorite activities like the Dune Rides are quintessential Saugatuck experiences that are perennially popular because they’re good, and they make for great traditions. But for your next time in Saugatuck, we invite you to consider shaking things up.

To help spice up your next visit to Saugatuck, we’ve compiled a list of activities, places, and restaurants that’ll show you just how multifaceted this town is.

What to do next time in Saugatuck

Fun for Friends and Family

If you liked the Dune Rides . . . try Harbor Duck Adventures

The Saugatuck Dune Rides are always one of the first things families do together when they visit Saugatuck. Next time, instead of getting a dose of history and scenery on the sand, try a tour on an amphibious vehicle with Harbor Duck Adventures. You’ll get even more area history, and a chance to ride on an antique, WWII-era vehicle.

retro boat rentals next time in saugatuckIf you liked the Star of Saugatuck . . . try Retro Boat Rentals

The Star of Saugatuck II is a classic way to enjoy Saugatuck’s waterways. First-time visitors often ride aboard the over-100-year-old sternwheeler to see the sights and learn about the area’s history. If you enjoyed that, next time try renting your own slightly-less-retro boat with Retro Boat Rentals. Select from a fleet of jet-age (‘50s-’60s era) runabout boats to explore the Kalamazoo River, or even make your way out to Lake Michigan.

If you liked touring art galleries . . . try making your own art at Express Yourself Art Barn

The Art Coast is filled with opportunities to view and purchase art, but maybe lesser known are opportunities to create art. Express Yourself Art Barn is a great spot for groups and families to put that artistic license to work.

saugatuck dunes state park next time in saugatuck

If you liked hiking Mount Baldhead . . . try the trails at Saugatuck Dunes State Park

Beloved Mount Baldhead is a popular place to get some exercise and catch a bird’s-eye view of the area. If you want to explore even more of the nature Saugatuck has to offer, you have to check out Saugatuck Dunes State Park. This park offers miles and miles of winding trails and access to some beautiful stretches of beach–some of which tend to be less crowded in the summer.

Beach Bumming

If you liked Oval Beach . . . try West Side County Park

Oval Beach is world-famous for its quality. Its wide stretch of soft sands means it can host lots of visitors, and the added bonus of changing rooms and a concession stand sweetens the deal. If you liked Oval Beach, but want to avoid the crowds this time around, try West Side County Park. Located just a 12-minute drive south of downtown Saugatuck, West Side County Park features a playground, a gazebo overlooking the bluff, and a wheelchair accessible ramp down to the beach.

just add water next time in saugatuckIf you liked swimming and sunbathing . . . try renting a SUP board at Just Add Water

Taking a dip in Lake Michigan is always refreshing and fun, but you can take playing in the water to the next level with a beach rental from Just Add Water. Try paddle boarding along the shore. Or just take your beach bumming to the next level with an umbrella or beach chair rental.

Wining and Dining

If you liked a wine tour . . . try a cider mill tour

The Saugatuck area features some great wineries, and wine tours are an exceedingly popular way to get a taste of the local culture. But wine isn’t all Saugatuck has to offer! Next time you visit, try touring Virtue Cider’s farm and learn all about the cider-making process.

If you liked Phil’s Bar and Grille . . . try Hercules Bar and Grill

Phil’s Bar and Grille is a favorite first stop when you first explore Saugatuck’s culinary scene. It’s a great example of the area’s delicious offerings. If you liked that, next time try Hercules! If you like steaks, seafood and chops, you’ll like Hercules. Be sure to try their delicious housemade cocktails, too.

Nightlife

If you liked Wally’s Bar & Grill . . . try The Corner Bar

Wally’s is a super popular spot to enjoy drinks with friends and see favorite local music acts. If you enjoyed that your last time here, next time, try The Corner Bar. A local favorite, it’s another great spot to grab a drink and catch entertainment.

What’s new in Saugatuck

saugatuck on the water

Saugatuck will always be a quaint small town perfect for a quiet vacation–but that doesn’t mean we never change. In fact, there’s lots of new places to discover every year. Visit us to find out what’s new in Saugatuck. Here are some new spots we think you shouldn’t miss.

Discover what’s new in Saugatuck

Shop Saugatuck

Kindel & Company

Find quality home goods and gifts at this lifestyle mercantile on Culver Street. Founded in 2004 in Howard, Michigan, Kindel & Co is brand new in Saugatuck.

Saugatuck Art Traders

Take a bit of Michigan’s Art Coast home with you. Saugatuck Art Traders sells “original paintings, limited edition signed fine art prints, sculpture and a few rare finds.”

Kismet Farm Bakerybreakfast in saugatuck new in saugatuck

Previously near Glenn, Kismet Farm Bakery has moved right into downtown Douglas. Stop by to treat yourself to hearth-baked goods. Be sure to taste their famous Seedy Salt bread–it’s a local favorite.

Dine out

Borrowed Time

Look for the iconic blue house on Water Street. This quaint restaurant opened in Saugatuck in 2016. Enjoy unique wine, craft beer, small plates, and homemade desserts–served right in the living room. It’s one of the spots on our Saugatuck bar crawl, too.

Lucy’s Little Kitchen

This restaurant started as an outdoor patio and hot dog stand and quickly became a favorite spot for lunch among locals and visitors alike. Its new Saugatuck location offers indoor and outdoor dining, a menu full of fresh, locally sourced dishes including a vibrant seafood selection.

bourbon new in saugatuck coppercraft distillery Grow

Breakfast and brunch in Saugatuck was taken to the next level when Grow came into town. With notable dishes like carrot cake pancakes, lavender lemonade, and fish tacos, Grow is a must visit the next time you visit.

Grab a drink

Coppercraft Distillery

This distillery first started making its premium spirits in Holland in 2012. In 2016, they opened a new tasting room in Saugatuck, where visitors can sample all of their handcrafted spirits: vodka, citrus vodka, gin, rum, applejack, bourbon, corn whiskey, and rye whiskey. Enjoy batch cocktails as well!

Guardian Brewing Company

retro boat rentals new in saugatuck

Saugatuck will be getting a new brewery in January 2019. Guardian Brewing Company is slated to make its home in the Red Barn Theater, where it will host a full restaurant, brewery, and events center.

Hit the water

Retro Boat Rentals

Ever wanted to drive a classic boat? Retro Boat Rentals lets you live out that dream. This new Saugatuck business opened in 2017 and quickly became wildly popular. Cruise the Kalamazoo River in style! Be sure to reserve in advance, these rentals get scooped up quickly.

For your mind & body

Redefine Medspaencompass wellness new in saugatuck

Saugatuck’s premier, luxury medical spa. Redefine Medspa offers everything from facials, to special occasion makeup applications, to therapeutic massages. Visit this new spot to pamper yourself or ease some aches and pains.

Encompass Wellness

Work out and have fun with one of Encompass Wellness’s diverse exercise courses. From yoga, to barre, to cardio drumming. You’re sure to find a class that will change up your hum-drum exercise routine, and your body will thank you.

Get a ride

Uber

Get from A to B with ease with Uber, now available in Saugatuck. Uber started offering its services in Saugatuck in summer 2017. Getting around Saugatuck just got easier!

West Michigan craft beverages to pair with Thanksgiving dinner

west michigan craft beverages

West Michigan is known for its excellent and expanding selection of quality craft beverages. In addition to being downright delicious, the beer, cider, wine, and liquor around here can really enhance a Thanksgiving dinner.  Make your palate happy during your Thanksgiving stay in the Saugatuck area. Pick up a bottle, six-pack, or growler of one of these West Michigan craft beverages.

6 West Michigan craft beverages to pair with Thanksgiving dinner

Michigan Harvest by Virtue Cider 

west michigan craft beverages virtue cider fennville
Image: Virtue Cider

This semi-dry apple cider is barrel aged in French oak. Its scent evokes a Michigan apple orchard at peak harvest time, and it tastes delicious with traditional Thanksgiving fare.

Chardonnay Reserve by Fenn Valley Winery 

This dry white wine captures the fresh character of the Chardonnay grape and is softened with vanilla tones from the French oak barrel it’s aged in. This wine goes especially well with creamy, squash-based side dishes.

Third Bear English Style Ale by Saugatuck Brewing Company 

“Not too hoppy, not too sweet, this beer is just right.” Third Bear has a toasty flavor with leafy undertones that make it a perfect for pairing with a meal celebrating the autumn harvest. With nine different malts, the beer is complex, but not overwhelming.

west michigan craft beverages thanksgivingDry Apple Cider by Crane’s Winery 

Crane’s Winery features a wide selection of house-made wines and ciders that are sure to delight. Grab some cans for a light, not-too-sweet cider that will harmonize well with a bite of smoky turkey.

Single-Barrel Bourbon by Coppercraft Distillery 

When it’s time for dessert, Coppercraft Distillery’s Single-Barrel Bourbon sings alongside a warm slice of apple pie. The frosty temperatures outside don’t stand a chance with a glass of this warming spirit. This bourbon is aged for a minimum 11 years, and you can pick up a bottle right in downtown Saugatuck.

2013 Riesling Ice Wine by Wyncroft 

If pie doesn’t suit your fancy, make a rich ice wine your dessert. Wyncroft’s 2013 Riesling Ice Wine is a product of that year’s Polar Vortex, which created three tons of frozen grapes that were then pressed and fermented into this sweet beverage. How does it feel on the palate? Wyncroft says it best: “Unctuous, thick, and creamy with an amazingly dense flavor profile of honey-dipped apple and candied apricot, accented with crisp acidity.”

What to do in Saugatuck / Douglas this Labor Day

memorial day weekend in saugatuck chain ferry

Are you coming to town for Labor Day? The weather this weekend is looking gorgeous. Get excited for your trip this weekend and plan your itinerary. Stay with Lakeshore Lodging for the ultimate vacation experience.

Your in-town itinerary

Catch one of these great Saugatuck-area events during your Labor Day stay.

Saugatuck-Douglas 19th Annual Bridge Walk

Join the community in a walk across the Blue Star Bridge on September 4, 9-10am. Starts on the Douglas side and proceeds to the Saugatuck side. Held in solidarity with the annual walk across the Mackinac Bridge, this walk is quite a bit shorter.

Labor Day Truck Parade 

Celebrate the businesses of West Michigan in Holland’s annual parade of big trucks. Bring your family, some earplugs, and an appetite for ice cream.

The Found Cottage Mercantile Market

Check out this two-day market featuring food trucks, vintage vendors, handmade artisans and more. September 1 and 2 at the Ottawa County Fairgrounds in Holland.

Toast: Show Opening 

Visit LaFontsee Gallery in Douglas for an end-of-summer celebration with art, drinks, and toast. September 3, 12-4pm.

Nina & Pinta Visit

A rare chance to see two Columbus replica ships. The Nina is the most accurate Columbus replica ship ever built, and you can get a dockside tour in South Haven this weekend. Learn more.

All-Crafts Fair

Peruse hundreds of exhibitors with fine arts, crafts, and food in South Haven during Labor Day weekend.

Fenn Valley Fall Vineyard Tour

Take part in one of Fenn Valley’s first fall vineyard tours. Learn about grape growing and winemaking.

Saugatuck Chain Ferry

Labor Day weekend is your last chance of the year to ride aboard the Saugatuck Chain Ferry—the only remaining hand-cranked ferry in the country. Hitch a ride across the Kalamazoo River for a shortcut to Oval Beach.

Music on the Lawn at Borrowed Time

Catch some outdoor tunes on the lawn at Borrowed Time before they’re done for the season.

Why You Need to Visit Fenn Valley Vineyards

fenn valley vineyards

It’s wine o’clock in Fennville thanks to Fenn Valley Vineyards. Just a short distance from Saugatuck, Fenn Valley Vineyards work with the natural terroir of western Michigan to produce fine wine that you’ve got to try. Here’s why you need to go visit while you’re in the area.

Do you love wine? There are many great vineyards and wineries in the area. There is also an abundance of other incredible ways to experience western Michigan. Here at Lakeshore Lodging, we know all the best things to do because we’re local.

What You Need to Know: Fenn Valley Vineyards

Just about 15 minutes from Saugatuck, Fenn Valley Vineyards offers the area some of the finest wines in Michigan. The unique climate at Fenn Valley Vineyards is like a pocket of milder winter temperatures, perfect for growing cold-tender grapes in a place that otherwise is mostly inhospitable to most varietals. Come, explore the vineyards and sample some wine. Then, take some with you!

Touring the Vineyards and Winery

At Fenn Valley Vineyards, tours are designed to be interactive and educational. The nearly two-hour tour will inspire you and help you appreciate even more the process of winemaking. You’ll have the chance to taste wine samples from different points in the process. Explore the vineyards, winery, cellar, and more in this open book of a winery tour. You won’t come across a tour so welcoming anywhere else!

Tours must be booked online in advance. Vineyard tours are not handicap accessible. Must be 21 years of age with a valid ID.

Wine to Take With You

White Wines and Sparkling Wines

The Michigan climate is great for growing white wine varietals, and it reflects in Fenn Valley Vineyards whites and sparkling wines! You’ll love the crisp flavor profile, balanced notes, and drinkability. Take some white wine home with you!

Red Wines

It can be difficult to grow red wine varietals in cold climates like Michigan. But, thanks to the expertise of the winery, Fenn Valley Vineyards reds are some of the best in the region. Pair them with meat and pasta dishes for the best pairing, or drink them just as they are!

Specialty Wines and Fruit Wines

Fenn Valley Vineyards produces a great selection of specialty and fruit wines for every occasion! You’ll love everything from port to blueberry or cherry wine. They also use raspberries, as well.

Take Some Wine Back to Your Vacation Rental

What better way to commemorate your tour of Fenn Valley Vineyards than to bring some quality Michigan wine back to your vacation rental? At Lakeshore Lodging, our rentals are the perfect solution for family vacations, romantic getaways, or get-togethers with friends! Make a toast to good wine and good times at these beautiful vacation rentals. You’re going to love staying with us, so contact us today to book your Saugatuck getaway!

Here’s Why You Should Stop by Tabor Hill Wine Port

tabor hill wine port

In cozy Saugatuck, MI, an array of shops and storefronts welcome you to wander downtown. One of those wonderful storefronts is the Tabor Hill Wine Port. As Saugatuck’s premier wine tasting room, Tabor Hill is the headquarters for wine in the area. Let the experts at Tabor Hill Wine Port guide you to the best wine experience you’ve ever had. It’s a great activity to sample the local flair and fare during your visit to Saugatuck!

Are you looking for the best things to see and do on Michigan’s Art Coast? Then, look no further than the recommended activities from Lakeshore Lodging! Our recommendations are sure to make your visit the best one yet. Trust us, we’re experts and we’re local!

You’ll Love the Selection and Expertise at Tabor Hill Wine Port

Though the wine is produced about an hour south of Saugatuck, the Tabor Hill Wine Port offers to residents and visitors of Saugatuck the chance to experience wine like never before. If you’re looking for quality wine with the opportunity for a tasting, then this is the spot for you. At the store, Tabor Hill’s wine experts are ready and waiting to guide you through their selection. They will walk you through tasting notes of each of their wines, highlighting flavors and aromas that make the wines special. It’s the perfect complement to the art galleries and boutiques downtown, too, meaning your shopping trip won’t be complete without a stop into the Tabor Hill Wine Port.

Tabor Hill Winery in Buchanan, MI

If you’re up for a little bit of an adventure from Saugatuck, then you should definitely make the trek down to Buchanan to visit the winery itself. At the winery lodge, you’ll love the hardwood floors and decor, and the unique lighting will set the mood for your visit. It’s the perfect place to relax and rest with quality Michigan wine. Plus, they’re open during the winter for wine tastings and dining, as well as the rest of the year. You can take a tour beginning in the springtime, and keep in mind that the restaurant is closed the week before Christmas to the middle of January. To stay up to date, you can check out their hours and locations.

Take the Journey During Your Saugatuck Getaway

Whether you’re just stopping in for some quality wine at the Tabor Hill Wine Port or making the journey down to Buchanan to see the winery, itself, you can’t go wrong during your Saugatuck getaway! And, when you stay with Lakeshore Lodging during your time here, you’ll feel right at home! Our beautiful vacation rentals are both comfortable and convenient, and we’re confident you’ll enjoy your time with us more than anywhere else. So, check out our available rentals and see for yourself the quality you’ll enjoy. Then, contact us to reserve your stay! Finally, if you need more ideas for things to see and do in the area. We guarantee they’ll make your vacation the best one yet!