CREIGHTON & MCKENZIE GALLAGHER
LOCAL VINE GROWERS + AN AWARD-WINNING WINEMAKER = PREMIUM MICHIGAN WINES
Just as every glass holds a story, so does every dream. Creighton Gallagher fell in love with the Traverse City area wine industry in 2007 when he worked at Old Mission Peninsula’s, Brys Estate, with his good friend Coenraad Stassen. Although he was a recent college graduate of Grand Valley State University in Accounting, he could not shake the feeling of discontent working in a cubicle, trying to fit into corporate America.
As a fifth generation farmer, he could not picture himself in any industry besides agriculture. When he met McKenzie, the two often dreamt of owning a winery. In fact, it was McKenzie’s thesis for her MBA. Their first date was at a wine tasting dinner at the Boat House Restaurant hosted by Brys Estate. Inspired by the experience, they began exploring Traverse City and Leelanau County wineries and gained a strong sense of what their winery would be if they ever had an opportunity to start their own.
Then in 2010, they had a chance to purchase a part of the family farm from Creighton’s father, John Gallagher. The stars must have aligned because at the time of the purchase, a 15 acre block of cherry trees needed to be replaced, which opened up an ideal opportunity to replace the trees with 15 acres of grapes. Living on love and lots of hard work, the Gallaghers put their plans in motion to open a tasting room in the Spring of 2016. In addition to their cherry farm and vineyard, the couple have four beautiful children, and are often surrounded by them at their farm.