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Michigan winery and Chicago restaurant come together to create and launch local keg wine in Illinois

Michigan keg wine makes its debut in Illinois at Chicago's newly opened Farmhouse Tavern. Partnering with Fresh Coast Distributors, Farmhouse Tavern offers house white and red wines on tap from Domaine Berrien Cellars in Berrien Springs, Michigan.

As the first Illinois restaurant to offer Michigan wine by the keg, Farmhouse Tavern owners TJ Callahan and Ferdia Doherty are proud pioneers of kegged local wine, the next logical step following the popular local food movement along with the trend towards local craft beers and spirits. Much like in European countries, where you drink local wine in the restaurants, Farmhouse Tavern will offer the same. “Ferdia and TJ wanted to find the best local wine to offer on tap to pair with their food and were impressed with the artisan juice Wally is producing at Domaine Berrien. We went through several barrel tastings before they decided on Domaine Berrien’s Marsanne and Merlot to feature as the Farmhouse White and Farmhouse Red,” says Kelly Kniewel, COO of Fresh Coast Distributors .

The exclusive Domaine Berrien wine is brought to Farmhouse Tavern via Fresh Coast Distributors in 20 liter disposable KeyKegs which when tapped, does not allow air to enter the container, keeping the wines fresh for months versus days in a traditional bottle. The KeyKeg also offers a reduced impact on the environment because of its recyclable components while eliminating the need for a return trip to the winery for refilling as needed with stainless steel kegs. Wally Mauer, owner and winemaker at Domaine Berrien Cellars says, “We’re excited to partner with Farmhouse Tavern on their keg wine project and expose Chicagoans to Michigan wine. Our Midwestern, lake-influenced terroir is unique and we’re producing excellent wines just across the water from one of the best food cities in the world, certainly a great pairing.”

Farmhouse Tavern is a Midwestern tavern featuring Midwest beers, wine and spirits and locally sourced seasonal fare from Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and Indiana. The menu is driven by Chef Eric Mansavage, formerly of Club Lucky, South Water Kitchen and Branch 27. The tavern will also feature house-made items like flavored sodas, catchup and chips.