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The State of Michigan has a thriving wine industry, be it with fruit wines or delicious Rieslings of various sweetness levels. Although its far northern location would make one think that viticulture would be impossible, there are enough areas near Lake Michigan, where prevailing breezes and winds help moderate the cold temperatures and help ripen grapes. There are four AVAs in the state, with the largest and arguably the most important being the Lake Michigan Shore AVA, in the state's far south, on the border with Indiana and Lake Michigan. Riesling is a signature variety, and it is also the most widely planted. There is a small percentage of Chardonnay planted here as well, but hybrids dominate, with examples such as Frontenac, Vignoles and La Crosse.

Riesling is also a major player in two northern AVAs, Old Mission Peninsula and Leelanau Peninsula. While hybrids are planted in these zones, vitis vinfera such as Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are much more important and widely planted. These AVAs on the eastern side of Lake Michigan, are filled with glacial soils on bedrock. There have been some notable critical successes her, especially with Dry Riesling and Chardonnay. Finally the Fennville AVA, the first in the state, is located within the Lake Michigan Shore appellation' again, Riesling is the most important variety. Today, with more than 120 wineries, Michigan ranks ninth in that category among the states, and eighth in the US as far as total wine production. (Wine/Appellations)