Our Roots


Silver Leaf Vineyard & Winery was born in 2005 by Mark & Patti Carlson with the purpose of continuously producing exceptional wines with great attention to detail. Silver Leaf aims to share its passion for wine with friends and guests. Mark and Patti transplanted from suburban Chicago to beautiful Suttons Bay, Michigan in 2005. Mark spent his childhood summers in Northport and fell in love with the region at an early age.

The long sunny summer days, cool nights, and long growing season in Leelanau County have been recognized as exceptional for growing world-class wines.Mark & Patti Carlson, Owners of Silver Leaf Vineyard & Winery

Silver Leaf sits north of Suttons Bay on 22 undulating acres once devoted to asparagus farming and then to horse boarding and riding. The winery building itself was once an old horse barn, and was extensively renovated to Mark’s designs and with his own two hands. The rustic setting creates a welcoming feel to visitors. In fact, visitors are often greeted by Mark's and Patti's dogs, Enzo and Abby. The Carlson dogs spend their day roaming the winery and vineyard grounds and love to meet new people.

When Mark and Patti started Silver Leaf in 2005, they planted over 3,000 vines, built the trellises and sunk the posts all with their own hands. They now both split their time working behind the bar in the Silver Leaf tasting room.

This is a testament to the philosophy behind Silver Leaf's wines -- all are hand-crafted, small batch fermented, oak mellowed, hand bottled, hand corked and hand labeled. Every part that goes into the winemaking process is done by hand with a great attention to detail.


Our Winery Dogs


Enzo is our 13 year old friendly Welsh Terrier welcoming committee! He loves to greet tasting room guests at their car, on the front deck or inside the tasting room. He lives for attention and belly rubs. He will even jump into your car if you're not careful (he once found a hamburger in one). The tour bus drivers love Enzo, because he enjoys cleaning the crumbs from the bus floors. The drivers invite him on for his cleaning abilities. Enzo was adopted from a no-kill shelter in Illinois when he was 3 years old. He even "spoke" Italian and still knows the command to "come here" in Italian, "venire qui".

Abby is our new black lab puppy and much to Enzo's dismay has been receiving a lot of the attention lately. Abby came to us from Atlanta, Michigan from a litter of 9 black pups (the mom was a chocolate lab and dad a yellow lab). She's getting used to the tasting room routine and guests are getting used to her training routine. She loves to run, play, chew, bite, chew, bite, eat, sleep, eat, bite, play and sleep. She gives great little puppy kisses. We have toys all over the yard, our house and tasting room to distract her from chewing our hands and ankles. Stop back often to see how Abby grows like a weed!  

Stop by and visit our Silver Leaf Vineyard winery dogs in the heart of Leelanau County!


 Our Wine Dogs: Abby and Enzo