Baxter’s Vineyard & Winery (address and info)
Distance from Chicago: 270 miles, 4.5-hour drive Southwest
A town of less than 1,200 residents, Nauvoo boasts more grapevines than people. Baxter’s Vineyard & Winery (established in 1857 and run by five generations of Baxters) remains the oldest of its kind in the state. Make sure to come hungry: the grounds are also home to Carol’s Pies (though be sure to order them ahead of time) and the tasting room serves up Angelini’s pizza, cooked to your 'za specs.
Side trip: Not up for the almost 5hr drive back in the same day? You’ve got a couple of solid options. For homebodies, Baxter’s recommends a night at the historic Nauvoo Grand B&B. For those feeling more adventurous, Nauvoo State Park is just a few miles down the road and set up for camping.
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Becky Schultz spends her days working in the whiskey business and her nights on a never-ending quest to find Chicago's best cheese curds. Follow her @rebeccaschultz.