Mario Batali - Photo Courtesy of Pure MichiganMario Batali - Photo Courtesy of Pure Michigan

Surprising to most, Michigan is the second most agriculturally diverse state in our country. Lake Michigan’s massive waters moderate the climate creating unique growing conditions typically not found in colder regions. For this reason, more than 300 agricultural commodities flourish, making Michigan an excellent place to explore local agriculture.

For me, I explore life through food and believe that unique, fresh, local ingredients are essential for delicious cooking at home. Michigan is an agricultural paradise, and a place I now call home as an escape from my hectic New York City life.

Michigan offers endless recreational experiences that connect you closer to the foods you consume. Pick strawberries at a u-pick farm. Stop by a farmers market or roadside stand to see what’s in season.Visit an educational farm and learn how to make traditional foods. Or, delve into the beverage scene that’s exploding with cideries, distilleries, craft breweries and wineries.

Whatever you’re interested in, it’s likely in Michigan.

- Mario Batali