Connecticut’s twenty-eight wineries are located throughout the state so that there is a winery within a forty-five minute drive from anywhere within the state. In 1978 after the enactment of the Connecticut Winery Act, the state established the Connecticut Wine Trail. Today this trail is divided into the eastern and western regions of the state.
Two AVAs encompass some of the state’s wineries. The Southeastern New England AVA stretches from south of Boston, Massachusetts to New London, Connecticut. It includes the land within fifteen miles of The Long Island Sound, Cape Cod and Massachusetts Bay. Many of the wineries on Connecticut’s eastern trail are within this AVA. The effect of Long Island Sound helps extend the growing season and allows for the growing of vinifera grapes. Common varietal grapes include Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Noir.
The Western Connecticut Highlands AVA is in the western part of the state. Most of the wineries on the Western Half of the Connecticut Wine Trail are in this AVA. The weather is cooler here and the growing season is less than in the area near Long Island Sound. Cool season grapes are grown in this area.
Connecticut Wine Trail
Blue signs throughout the state help travelers find wineries. The Connecticut Wine Trail passes through the countryside and historic areas. The trail is divided into an east section and west section.
The Connecticut Farm Wine Development Council created a passport program for visitors to Connecticut wineries. Wine travelers can receive a copy of the passport at winery tasting rooms throughout the state. Receive a stamp in the passport while visiting any of the twenty-six wineries participating in the program. Collect fourteen stamps by early November and turn in the passport for a chance to win prizes.