FENTON, Michigan – With all of the positive changes that have happened to the Fenton Winery & Brewery over the last three years, it comes as no surprise that the popular Fenton business is bringing its trade to Holly, setting up shop in a specially designed wine-tasting room at The Holly Mill, 105 Civic Dr., Holly.
The Fenton Winery & Brewery Lounge, 1545 N. Leroy St., Fenton opened its doors in 2008 and ever since, owners, Matt and Ginny Sherrow, have shaped their business into what it is today – a full-service winery and micro-brewery lounge, serving a wide variety of handcrafted wines, micro-brews, delectable foods and live entertainment to an ever-increasing customer base each week.
Over the last 12 years, Ginny said she and Matt have always had a passion for wine. “That was always a fun thing for us to do – wine tasting at Mission Point,” Ginny said. “Whenever we took a trip, we went out of our way to find a winery.”
The idea to open a retail space winery, Ginny said, was inspired by a similar business the couple visited in Burton. “We saw that you could do wine in a retail establishment inside instead of owning a vineyard,” she said. “We get juice from California, bring it here and make our wines on site.”
In addition to making wines from out-of-state juices, the Sherrows also make wine from many of Michigan’s fresh fruits, although FWB hasn’t released many of those yet due to the lengthy aging process.
While the couple originally opened their business as a winery, they soon began to discover that they needed to do more. “We quickly realized that we needed more so we added food – and then we added wine by the glass, and later, we added music,” Ginny said. Recognizing there was a demand for micro brewed beer, the entrepreneurial couple did just that, taking up the craft and brewing their own beer. “We added on the brewery portion of the business last December, and now here we are – FWB Lounge.”
Offering more than 20 different handcrafted wines, five different types of micro brews, home-brewed root beer on tap and cream soda by the bottle, a menu that includes sandwiches, wraps, salads, soups, desserts, flavored coffees and more, and providing live entertainment each week, the Sherrows manage to stay pretty busy.
“We make a lot of tasty holiday drinks, too,” Ginny said. “We make a port with fresh bananas, fresh elderberries and brandy, and we also make a mulled wine for winter,” she said. “We actually put mulling spices in it while it’s fermenting – cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves so that’s a real popular one around the holidays.”
Last Saturday, FWB brought wine tasting to Holly, officially opening its wine tasting room at The Holly Mill.
“For now, we’ll be at the Holly Mill & Company wine tasting room on Saturdays from 1-6 p.m.” Ginny said. “Eventually, we hope to be open at the Mill on Friday evenings, too.”
Geared toward wine tasting only, customers may sample from a dozen FWB wines before opting to buy as little as a bottle or as much as a case.
“I’m really looking forward to when the Blackthorn Pub opens on Saginaw Street,” Ginny said. “The wine tasting room is a perfect before-dinner treat – we’re hoping to work with several downtown businesses in this way.”
Owner of the Holly Mill & Company, Autumn Anderson said she stumbled upon the Fenton Winery & Brewery as she was out and about, looking for the best locally-made products to bring into her store. “I just really liked how Matt and Ginny’s place made us feel, and how great their wine selections were,” Anderson said. “They really work hard together and take great care of their customers – I thought they would be a great fit for what we are trying to do here for the Holly community.”
Last Saturday, Anderson said the Holly Mill hosted over 275 Dickens Festival-goers, crediting the wine tasting room for much of the success. “Holly is going through a great revitalization period, using some of the newest trends in shopping while still managing to hold onto our unique village atmosphere – the Fenton Winery & Brewery wine tasting room is a perfect addition.”