“Eeeee-very Rosedale Has Its Cooooorn. And Wine.”
Rosedale Farms and Vineyards, Simsbury
September 27, 2008
I find myself using the word “bucolic” a lot on this website, and it’s starting to annoy me. Thesaurus.com gives me arcadian, campestral, pastoral, provincial, rural, and rustic. “Campestral” fails the WordPress spellchecker. Arcadian sounds cool, but who knows that word?
The first definition online is “of Arcadia.” Gee, thanks. But the second definition says “rural, rustic, or pastoral, esp. suggesting simple, innocent contentment.” Okay, we can use that.
Rosedale Farms & Vineyards in the Historic Weatogue section of Simsbury is beautiful and arcadian. This is the kind of place where yuppies and hipsters wish they could buy produce from all the time. (Since I actually CAN, as they have a farmstand mere minutes from our house, I have to say IN YOUR FACE metro yuppies and hipsters!)
2018: Remember this was written in 2008 when such things weren’t as abundant as they are today.
It is a historic working farm whose agricultural character is permanently protected by a Simsbury Land Trust conservation easement. Rosedale Farm consists of over 100 acres of fine agricultural soil and protects 1100 feet of Farmington River frontage. In other words, this place is great for many reasons.
Their sales pitch:
Since 1920 Rosedale Farms has been serving the community with the freshest produce. Today the farm tradition is carried on by not only the 3rd and 4th, but also the 5th generation. In recent years there has been a decline in local farms and a rise in big chain supermarkets whose produce lacks freshness, time and care; however Rosedale Farms continues to grow quality produce that only 80 plus years of farm experience can provide. There’s fresh, and then there’s Rosedale FRESH! If quality produce is what you’re looking for, come to Rosedale Farms. You will be supporting your local farm and we’ll be able to give you another 80 years of farm freshness!!
Ugh. Multiple exclamation points. Definitely not arcadian. In addition to the whole farm thing, there is also an “award winning” vineyard on premises. They’ve only been bottling wine for three years here and are already quite successful.
We caught a break in the all-day rain forecast and decided to make the short trek out to taste us some wine. Damian was in a good mood, which meant that Hoang and I were in a good mood, so this was going to be a fun trip.
The gentleman giving the tasting was attentive and friendly. You’d think this goes without saying, but this is not always the case at all Connecticut wineries when you arrive with a two-year-old nutball in perhaps not your best attire. The tasting area is merely a corner of their farm store – “the flies only add to the farm ambience,” said the guy serving us. Indeed.
We tasted four whites and two reds. Again, full disclosure, I am a novice’s novice when it comes to actually knowing stuff about wine. Hoang and I are just trying to visit enough places to fill our CT winery passports to be eligible for our trip to Spain next February.
Some notable wines were the “Simsbury Celebration”, which is a blend of 100% Simsbury grown Seyval Blanc and French Meynieu grapes. It was decent; crisp and fruity.
From there, the whites fell off a bit for me, but that’s because they were too sweet for my palate. The last white, “Summer Bouquet,” was positively saccharine – it tasted like raspberry syrup had been infused in the aging process. (Or just backsweetened like so much of Connecticut wine.) Bleh.
“Lou’s Red,” however, was excellent. With some imported California Merlot and Sangiovese grapes paired with estate grown St. Croix and Marchal Foch grapes, this was good enough for us to buy a bottle. To use their words, this is “an elegant, supple wine with flavors of wild black raspberry, black cherry, and plum with faint mineral and sage notes.” Whatever they say.
I don’t know who Lou is, but I did learn from the bottle that the Epstein family owns Rosedale.
The last red was rather forgettable. The server guy was quick to mention it is the only wine they sell with 0% local grapes – I’m sure he noted this because he knows it’s not that good. The description mentions a “cedar” note to the wine and I’m here to tell you, the wine tastes like cedar. And that’s not a good thing (to me).
Rosedale is a cool place that is far more than just a winery. They host fancy Max Group dinners and even better, the Simsbury Land Trust maintains a little trail here. Yes, I’ve hiked it.