Chateau Chantal Co-Founder Remembered for Love, Warmth and Laughter

Northern Michigan is remembering one of the founders of a popular and well known winery on the Old Mission Peninsula.

Nadine Begin passed away over the weekend.

She and her husband Bob founded Chateau Chantal on the Old Mission Penninsula and watched it grow to what it is today.

Behind a door inside the tasting room at Chateau Chantal is a wall lined with pictures that tell the story of Nadine Begin’s life, one defined by love.

“Nadine was such a warm person, a lot of people may not have met her because she tended to be a more private person. She was very personable one on one, she cooked breakfast for many years in the bed and breakfast,” said Operations Manager Liz Berger.

Nadine and her husband Bob met when they were serving the Catholic Church as a nun and a priest. They left the ministry and went on to found one of the most well-known wineries on Old Mission Peninsula.

“The reason people come to Chateau Chantal is to be part of the family, we have a large core of return business and it’s because of her,” said Brian Lillie, Director of Hospitality and Distribution.

Brian Lillie is Director of Hospitality and Distribution at Chateau Chantal and spent years working alongside Nadine, learning countless lessons.

“When you extend some love into the food that is felt, most people make memories in the kitchen and that’s a magical piece of this place,” said Lillie.

Nadine was also known for her lighter side and love of laughter.

“I remember fun and the most fun times were when Nadine would decide to yodel,” said Lillie.

“I sit on an exercise ball instead of a chair and every time she’d walk by she’d say, okay bounce a little bit for me,” recalled Berger.

But she’ll forever be known for the enduring mark she leaves at Chateau Chantal.

“She may not have even known you or may have known you, and it would make no difference as far as the reception you would feel, and the warmth that you would feel and that’s the beauty she brought to this place,” said Lillie.