Before it was tamed, the wild grape was the scourge of the valleys, mocking the looks of recently sheared sheep and running away with farmers' sons. Drink to the fruits of cultivation with today's Groupon to Chateau Aeronautique Winery in Jackson. Choose between two options:
- For $60, you get a private wine tasting for four (a $120 value).
- For $30, you get a private wine tasting for two (a $60 value).
A commercial airline pilot, Chateau Aeronautique owner Lorenzo Lizarralde combined his passion for flight and viniculture by opening a winery on an airpark. The grounds boast an onsite hangar and vintage airplane, elegantly evoking the past without forcing patrons to don sepia-toned glasses. The winery's visitors are invited to Lizarralde's indoor, ornately decorated and marble-topped wine bar, where they may taste a minimum of 10 wines, including pinot gris, cabernet franc, chardonnay, and riesling, accompanied by cheese and fresh-baked baguettes. The tasting glass is yours to keep for future sips or percussive additions to kitchen-based utensil bands. Post palate-pleasing, guests are taken on a private tour of the winery, which was designed after chateau wineries of the Bordeaux region.
Reservation required. Call ahead to schedule.
- Owner Lorenzo Lizarralde greeted us in his beautiful gazebo tasting room and then gave us a tour of his winery, located in his home at the Williams Aero Estates, an airpark where home owners have their own hangars, airplanes and grassy runway. – Phyllis Rose, Kalamazoo Gazette
Chateau Aeronautique Winery
Lorenzo Lizarralde's two passions—winemaking and aeronautics—may seem unrelated, but they coexist in harmony at Chateau Aeronautique Winery. There, the winery shares its space with an airplane hangar and grass runway on which the vintner frequently lands his 1956 Cessna 172. Fermented from Michigan grapes, the chateau's handcrafted wines span the gamut, from dry to semisweet, wafting strawberry bouquets, apricot aromas, and floral notes.
To spotlight his elixirs, Lorenzo regularly hosts events amid his idyllic environs, which take inspiration from the wineries in Bordeaux, France. Guests traipse across the grounds en route to a gazebo or the hangar, where they can revel with up to 80 fellow sippers. For more intimate flavor exploration, they flock to a private tasting room, replete with an ornate, wooden bar that provides the coziness of a grandparent's wine cellar, but with more wine and fewer Clark Gable posters.