Visits to Every Connecticut Winery
Skip down to The Wineries
The Connecticut Wine Trail adopted a new slogan in 2012: “Taste the Adventure!” This didn’t particularly strike me as the best possible choice, so I asked a few people for their reaction to it. My wife Hoang replied, “It’s telling me to lick a mountain.” Delicious.
The Connecticut Farm Wine Development Council promotes and runs the annual Passport program which is one of the best things to do in the state. We started completing passports in 2008 when the number of required visits was 10. By 2011, that number had jumped to a still-manageable 16. In 2018, to qualify for the incredible grand prizes, you must visit and be stamped by 34 wineries.
Sure, you can walk into the tasting rooms and ask for a stamp and leave if that’s your style. I was never able to bring myself to do that back when we were completing this thing every year though.
There are around 40 wineries that participate in the Passport program but fewer on the official Connecticut Wine Trail. The Trail is a state thing that has requirements about longevity and production volume whereas the Passport simply includes all the viable commercial wineries who wish to participate.
Over the years, I’ve had a few things to say about our wineries. The state has as well, busting a bunch of them for using a higher percentage of non-Connecticut grapes than is allowed by law. Not that anything actually happened to them by way of a punishment. The number of wineries has grown since I began following it, but it has been far-surpassed by Connecticut breweries.
Yet, most of our wineries are pretty, whereas the vast majority of breweries are not. The wineries are often located on hillsides or along river valleys down backroads in pastoral towns, in large, modern buildings built by wealthy retirees. That alone makes many worth visiting; the chance to escape a bit and just enjoy an afternoon.
Most of my visits linked below were at least a decade ago, so please forgive any youthful exuberance and/or terrible pictures. Cheers!
Links take you to my visits
Bethlehem Vineyard, Bethlehem, November 2014
Fitch Claremont Vineyard B&B, Bozrah, June 2011 (Non-commercial vineyard)
Maywood Gardens Winery, Bridgewater (Private estate)
Digrazia Vineyards, Brookfield, November 2008
Chamard Vineyard, Clinton, July 2008
Priam Vineyard, Colchester, October 2008
Heartstone Farm & Winery, Columbia
Cassidy Hill Vineyard, Coventry, May 2009
Shelter Rock Winery, Danbury
Staehly Farm Winery, East Haddam
Brignole Vineyard, East Granby
Joseph Preli Farm Winery, Glastonbury
Miranda Vineyard, Goshen, June 2008
Sunset Meadow Vineyard, Goshen, June 2008
Lost Acres Vineyard, Granby, September 2011
Bishops Orchards Winery, Guilford, August 2009
Lebanon Green Vineyards, Lebanon
Holmberg Orchards, Ledyard, July 2009
Maugle Sierra Vineyards, Ledyard, July 2009
Haight-Brown Vineyard, Litchfield, November 2008
Sunset Hill Vineyard, Lyme
Chateau Le’ Gari’, Marlborough
Connecticut Valley Winery, New Hartford, October 2008
Jerram Winery, New Hartford, May 2008
Rosabianca Vineyards, North Branford
Land of Nod Winery, North Canaan, October 2008
Jonathan Edwards Winery, North Stonington, October 2009
Sharpe Hill Vineyard, Pomfret, February 2008
Arrigoni Vineyard, Portland, October 2012
Crystal Ridge Winery, Glastonbury
Dalice Elizabeth Winery, Preston, August 2010
Preston Ridge Vineyard, Preston, September 2014
The Vineyard at Hilly Land, Scotland
Jones Winery, Shelton, October 2009
White Silo Winery, Sherman, September 2012
Rosedale Vineyard, Simsbury, September 2008
Saltwater Farms Vineyard, Stonington, May 2010
Stonington Vineyards, Stonington, October 2009
Gouveia Vineyard, Wallingford, July 2008
Paradise Hills Vineyard, Wallingford, August 2011
Hopkins Vineyard, Warren, November 2008
Strawberry Ridge Vineyards, Warren
Spring Hill Vineyards, Washington (Private estate)
Hawk Ridge Winery, Watertown
Savino Vineyards, Woodbridge, December 2012
Black Lion Vineyard, Woodbury (Probably not opening)
Walker Road Vineyard, Woodbury, June 2013
Taylor Brook Winery, Woodstock, November 2009