Traverse City: Michigan’s Culinary Tourism Star

eatdrinkTC will be out at the Pure Michigan Governor’s Conference on Tourism at the Grand Traverse Resort today, talking with some of the 1000+ presenters and tourism pros from Michigan and elsewhere about the theme of this year’s conference: culinary tourism.

 

Traverse City Wine Country - Big Little & L MawbyEarlier this year we asked Pure Michigan Vice-president George Zimmerman why they’d tapped Traverse City as the host. George answered, “Traverse City has a highly regarded, and accessible, foodie scene that makes it a perfect place to host this year’s culinary-themed tourism conference. There is no doubt attendees will be treated to some good eats along with opportunities to network and learn more about how to capitalize on culinary tourism here in Michigan.”

The Freep’s Tom Walsh noted in his article on taking Michigan’s tourism product to the next level that an optional wine tour of the area for attendees yesterday sold out quickly, as did a brewery tour that we had a chance to join. Walsh thinks that’s no accident and that Traverse City’s recipe for success – blending wine, water and farm-to-table – can help Michigan become a top-tier travel destination.

“Travelers today are more interested in experiences than things,” said Sarah Nicholls, a Michigan State University professor and co-author of the annual Michigan tourism outlook to be presented Monday at the conference. Culinary tourism is a theme of the 2014 gathering and foodie buzz about Michigan, and the Traverse City area in particular, is growing. “The wineries and microbreweries really are driving business,” Nicholls said.

A farm-to-table movement — highlighted on a blackboard listing of local suppliers to the acclaimed Cooks’ House restaurant in Traverse City — is developing in pockets around the state. Celebrity chef Mario Batali called Cooks’ House one of his nine favorite restaurants in the world.

With culinary accolades for our wine, beer and food scene rolling in monthly, it’s clear that the wider world is taking notice of Traverse City. Click through to read more of Tom’s thoughts and stay tuned to eatdrinkTC this week for a report on the Conference.

 

 

A farm-to-table movement — highlighted on a blackboard listing of local suppliers to the acclaimed Cooks’ House restaurant in Traverse City — is developing in pockets around the state. Celebrity chef Mario Batali called Cooks’ House one of his nine favorite restaurants in the world.