Skillets and wine: Mari adds tasting options

Mar. 16—TRAVERSE CITY — Customers will find a new food menu and weekly specials at Mari Vineyards.

Bonnie Hardin said they are encouraging local residents to take advantage of their new offerings. She said many people may have more time to visit now than during the busy summer months.

"We started them as our season slows down after the holidays," Hardin said. "We wanted to try to coax people out."

She said Chef Aric Anagnost has "really elevated our menu." The small plates section focuses on skillets and other items that are perfect for lunch, she added.

Anagnost said they are "trying to offer a simple menu that would allow people to enjoy" the building, the property and the wines.

"The idea behind the new menu featuring small plates and shareable little snacks was to establish Mari as a place for locals to hang out," he said.

He said the mushroom agrodolce skillet is popular. This is focaccia topped with portobello mushroom, fontina cheese and an egg.

In addition to the skillets, Anagnost said they have crostini — Italian herb and cheese baguette with a variety of topping options like cucumber or bruschetta.

The winery plans to release their spring and summer menu in May, he said. That will include snacks and charcuterie boards as well as pasta salads and "lots of produce and fruit." There will also be a private picnic option. Anagnost suggested taking food outside if the weather is nice.

"I look forward to seeing the crowds again," he said. "I hope everyone enjoys the food and the wine."

Wine pairings are suggested alongside the dishes on the kitchen menu. Weekly specials include Old Mission Peninsula Local's Day on Thursdays, happy hour from 4-7 p.m. Fridays and Educator's Day on Saturdays.

Hardin said these specials are a way to show appreciation for groups in the area who they would like to see more of at the winery.

The winery also offers items from local businesses like Great Lakes Chocolate and Dessert and Shortie's TC.

Mari Vineyards is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through April. For the current food menu and specials, visit