Summary: Enjoy a visit to Chamard Vineyards and take a picnic lunch to enjoy. Cheese and cracker plates are also available in the tasting room. Located in Clinton, Connecticut the winery is within two miles of Long Island Sound.
An attractive approach along a long driveway with vineyards on both sides is enjoyable for visitors. Located in Clinton, Connecticut Chamard Vineyards was established in 1983 by Bill Chaney. The location within two miles of Long Island Sound has its own microclimate conducive to growing grapes. While the vineyards began in 1984, it was not until 1988 that the winery facility was completed. Recently Dr. Rothberg, who has a passion for wine, purchased the winery and vineyards. Dr. Rothberg is renowned for his work with the Rothberg Institute. He started the Methuselah Project, which researches the genes responsible for extending people’s healthy lives.
The tasting room is housed in a New England style building with the winery below. Stone walls, a part of the structure, were created with stones from the property. Inside the winery the wood beams were also created from the wood cleared from the property. The entrance to the winery tasting room is in the center of the building with red brick steps and patio welcoming visitors. A deck off the tasting room provides an excellent spot to enjoy a glass of wine overlooking a pond with a large fountain and numerous vineyards. Stone fences dot the property adding a delightful New England ambiance.
Twenty acres of the forty-acre property are vineyards. The majority of the grape acreage is planted with Chardonnay while one acre of Merlot, one acre of Cabernet Franc, one acre of Cabernet Sauvignon and one of Pinot Noir add diversity. The winery also sources grapes from Long Island. According to Mario Lupone, who assisted us with our wine tasting, the winery produces 6,000 to 7,000 cases of wine.
We tasted several wines. The Stone Cold White 2007 was a Chardonnay. The aroma was of citrus and tropical fruits. There were fruit salad nuances on the taste. The finish was crisp with tropical fruit aftertaste. Chardonnay 2004 was produced with 40 percent French oak and 60 percent stainless steel. The aroma was of apple, pear and oak. There was some caramel and fruit on the taste. The finish was crisp and smooth. The 2004 Estate Reserve was produced with 60 percent French oak and 40 percent stainless steel. The aroma was of apple and oak. The taste was smooth with caramel and vanilla nuances. The finish was crisp and fruity. Pinot Gris 2007 offered a citrus aroma with a bit of pineapple. The taste was smooth with citrus and grapefruit nuances. The wine finish was crisp with citrus.
Rosé 2007 was a bend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. The color was orange/red with a strawberry aroma. The taste was of strawberries and plums. The finish was light and crisp.
Cabernet Franc 2005 was a translucent red and sienna color. The aroma was of pepper. The taste was smooth with pepper, dark fruit and spicy. The finish was crisp and spicy. Merlot 2005 was reddish purple and translucent. The aroma was earthy with dark fruit nuances. The taste was of dark fruit and spice. The finish was crisp with mild tannins. Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 was a reddish purple color. The aroma was of blackberries. The taste was smooth with blackberries. The finish was crisp with tannins.
When planning your visit to Chamard Vineyards, consider taking a picnic lunch to enjoy on the grounds.
115 Cow Hill Road,
Clinton, CT 06413
GPS: N41º 18.060’ W72º 32.701’