Roadtripping Adventures: A Weekend in Petoskey, Michigan

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How I spent a weekend in Petoskey — including, what to do and where to eat for amazing plant-based options!


It’s been a while since I’ve taken a road trip.

I’m usually driving with somebody to my destination, rather than driving up to meet loved ones.

But this past weekend I drove to Petoskey, Michigan with my sister to visit my parents, who rented a condo in Bay Harbor for a long weekend.

My sister and I ventured from Detroit to Petoskey together, which is about a four-hour drive. As I’m leaving for Scotland in just under eight weeks, it was a nice way for us to spend some quality time together.

We listened to this playlist on Spotify to keep us going while we watched the gorgeous Michigan summer scenery pass us by with the windows rolled down.

Summer in Michigan has arrived.

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Day One – Friday: A Night for Pizza & Relaxation

My sister, Bella, and I arrived to Petoskey just in time for happy hour at the Palette Bistro in downtown. We were seated at a cafe-style black metal table outside underneath a little umbrella to shield us from the summer sun. It felt as though we were in a garden, with all the artistically planted foliage surrounding us.

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Bella, contemplating the limited vegan options on the menu.

We first ordered a version of a jalapeno margarita called “the crowd pleaser” — but were disappointed because it did not taste at all like jalapeno.

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We like our drinks spicy, what can I say.

Next, we ordered the house margarita which was much better and not overly sweet or salty.

For food, there was not much to offer vegans. But the waitress was super helpful and accommodating. We each had a Palette salad and shared the cucumber carpaccio, which was served to us without the dairy and over cucumber chips. It was really filling and a nice late afternoon snack.

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After we were finished up, we walked over to the Grain Train, which is the local Petoskey organic grocer and co-op. We got some fruit and other goodies for our weekend.

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Next door is Mighty Fine Pizza, so we stopped to get ourselves a gluten-free vegan pizza for later in the evening, since neither of us felt like cooking and our parents wouldn’t arrive till after dinner. #lazyvegans

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After we picked up the pizza, we headed back to Bay Harbor to watch the sun set and get into comfy clothes. We spent the rest of the evening catching up, walking around Bay Harbor and taking in the gorgeous scenery of Northern Michigan.

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James Bond, much? There happened to be a vintage boat and car show the weekend we were there. So we got to enjoy some bad ass boats.
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Goodnight, Lake Michigan.

Day Two – Saturday: Rainy Adventures

We started off Saturday morning at the local farmers market. Even though it was rainy, my family was determined to make the most of our time together.

I purchased local raw honey, maple syrup, mustard, and hummus from different stands. All of which I was able to try before I bought, which was wonderful.

I talked to some of the farmers and one of them encouraged my sister and I to stop by the farm later on to check it out.

I love shopping at famers markets because you not only know where your food is coming from, but it’s a great way to support your local economy and environment. Not to mention, a nice way to meet cool people.

Your dollar is your vote. Spend wisely.

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Those pretty purple and white veggies are kholrabi — they taste like radish without the bite!

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Afterwards, we headed to Lavender Hill Farm in Boyne City because it is a favorite of my mom’s.

Despite the gloomy weather, and the not-yet-blooming lavender, it still smelled floral and the surrounding forest was alluring in the mist and overcast sky. We toured the fields, checked out the gift shop, then headed to Harbor Springs for lunch.

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Lunch was at the Paper Station Bistro in downtown Harbor Springs, which is a quaint little town on the other side of the Bay.

I was ravishing by the time we got there, and I was happy to find they had a totally vegan homemade black bean burger on their menu.

I wasn’t super impressed, but I was hungry, so I ate my burger sans-bun. My sister, being the only other vegan in my family besides my husband, ordered the burger as well.

After lunch, since we were with my mom, we headed to Dressed, a favorite store of hers in Harbor Springs.

Side note: If shopping were an Olympic sport, my mom would win gold.

My sister and I found a cute little sundress we liked, and (surprise, surprise) both bought it. I don’t know if we’ve had matching dresses since we were five, but hey, if the dress fits…

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When we finally emerged from Dressed alive, yet ragged and barely hanging on to our wallets, we decided to take the farmer Bella and I met at the farmers market earlier that day up on his offer.

So the whole fam headed to Pond Hill Farm, located in the famously beautiful Tunnel of Trees on M-119.

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The greenhouse
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Delicious strawbs grown right on the farm.

We wandered around the grounds and were able to pet baby pigs, goats, a pregnant bunny, ducks, chickens, and a sheep.

They were all extremely well taken care of and clearly loved by those on the farm.

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Ms. Bun Bun enjoying some fresh kale.

We even ran into the farmer we met earlier and he was pleased and grateful that we had stopped by.

After we were done loving on the animals, we headed up to the balcony for some wine tasting. And best of all — the wine is made right on the farm!

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The “Sparkler” quartet — sparkling ciders and wines made right on Pond Hill Farm

While not an overly vegan-friendly farm, I really enjoyed seeing the sweet baby animals, walking around the lush grounds and spending time on the balcony, which overlooked the garden, tasting wine.

After our time on Pond Hill Farm, we headed back to the condo to freshen up — then back out for dinner.

We decided to try Pour, a restaurant with great reviews in downtown Petoskey. It also accommodates omnivores, which is why we chose it, since my parents still eat meat.

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Both Bella and I ordered the only vegan option on the menu — the Ethiopian Roasted Vegetable plate. It was the most filling dish I had on the entire trip. I was pleased to go to a restaurant where a hearty vegan meal was offered that wasn’t just a veggie burger.

The menu was a little all over the place, with offerings of sushi to Ethiopian cuisine, but I guess there was something for everyone!

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lentils | berbere spiced local parsnip | carrot | fingerling potato | house garlic hummus | pea shoots | grapefruit segments

Day Three — Sunday: Charlevoix & Linen

I headed home on Sunday, but first we had to stop for brunch. My mom had been wanting to try Stafford’s which has a buffet-style Sunday brunch.

I was terribly unimpressed, as I (to be perfectly honest) felt as though I was dining in a nursing home. I would not recommend this place for vegans or health-conscious people. The food was expensive and all they had to offer vegans was cut up strawberries and a dismal fruit salad.

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Me, dressed in blue.

After brunch, we ventured to Charlevoix to visit my mom’s favorite shop in the area: Maison & Jardin . This little shop is full of gorgeous European-inspired linen clothing and home goods.

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I didn’t make it out without purchasing a little something. My heart was set on a sage green linen bell-sleeved dress and red linen scarf, both made in Italy.

Linen is one of my favorite fabrics to wear besides organic cotton. It is so soft and is such an effortlessly chic way to dress.

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Then we wandered around for a bit. There was an art show going on and people filled the streets creating quite the crowd.

In one little alley, we stumbled upon this flower shop called Bloom. It reminded me of Paris.

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Visions of Paris in Charlevoix

After checking out a few more spots, we said our goodbyes and I was back on the road toward home after a busy weekend away.


Have you ever been to Petoskey? Where are your favorite spots to visit?

Until next time,

xx

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