Four writers from Midwest Living magazine recently explored the culinary side of Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio. Called “4 Ultimate Food Trails,” the article describes the places they visited during a weekend food tour in each state.
They visited Southwest Michigan, where I live, following a 125-mile route (each way) from the Lake Michigan shore at Saugatuck and inland to the Indiana state line.
Called the Fruit Belt (news to me, but I’m from New Jersey originally!), it’s laden with orchards, vineyards, and vegetable farms. Just look up Michigan on LocalHarvest.org to find the bounty of fresh produce in this area.
Because homegrown, fresh food is so accessible, I think it’s easier for restaurateurs to focus on procuring local products for their menu offering–including grassfed and pastured meats, as well as organic milk, eggs, and cheese.
I was excited to see Salt of the Earth, a restaurant located in nearby Fennville, on the tour! It’s one of the restaurants Bill and I like to go to because they try to offer local ingredients whenever possible.
The writers also went to Evergreen Lane Farm & Creamery, which I still need to visit, as well as Fenn Valley Winery, my favorite–and closest–local winery. (If you’re in the area this weekend, check out the Fenn Valley Wine Fest to sample what’s in their cellar!)
I have to agree with them in their description of this region: “The flavors of our past have become the ingredients of our future, and Michigan offers them in abundance.”