Over the past 100+ years, the farm has seen a variety of commodities, and started with cherry trees, a couple hogs and a few head of cattle. Since then the farm has been home to acres of asparagus, apples, corn, soybeans, wheat, canola, peaches and even 500 head of beef cattle, just to name a few…
The farm started in 1914 (hence the name, Cellar 1914) by a gentleman named Vet Shooks. He drove by this property on a weekly basis on the way to church and noticed a cherry tree growing on the southwest side of the road. Up on the hill with Lake Michigan close by, the cherries were producing quality fruit due to the close proximity of the lake. Vet made the comment to his family that one day he would like to buy that property because of how well it had produced those wild cherries, so that is exactly what he did and the rest is history.
Flash forward into the fourth generation, the farm has a very different look and focus- less field crops and livestock and more fruit- cherries and grapes. Grapes, like cherries, benefit from the lake. The newest direction of the farm helps to bring the new (grapes/wine) in with the old (history). Our tasting room was designed with the history of the farm in mind. Placed at the heart of the farm, with views of Lake Michigan, the tasting room and production facility made sense.
We finished the interior work ourselves and incorporated several pieces of rich history from around the farm to help with the details. The back bar is constructed from barn wood that is over 100 years old, the crown molding is old boards that cattle have rubbed on for the past 40 years, something that is unique and hard to recreate. There is a breakfast table in the tasting room that three of the four generations have sat at for countless breakfasts made by Doris “Gram” Shooks who married Marvin Shooks (Second Generation). The décor is full or stories, including a trunk that carried our ancestors belongings from the old country, the deed framed and hung on the wall, cherry tanks with the original farm name embedded in the tasting bar, and cherry lugs that help to display the bottles of wine for purchase. The story is everywhere you look.
Come, taste and enjoy!