Thursday, October 22, 2015

Fall Frolic, Part 2

We decided to go to Sharpe Hill Winery because it's one of the Connecticut wineries we hadn't visited yet.  The winery itself is beautiful, built into a big old barn (you can see some outside shots in yesterday's post).  They also have a Zagat-rated restaurant there. While familiar with their Ballet of Angels wine (it's the best selling CT wine on the market), we had never tried any of their other wines.

Once you go inside, you go to a desk and choose what type of tasting you want (half or full) and where you want to have it. This winery is unique in that once you choose your spot, they come to your table and serve your tastings.  Sort of fascinating to watch the servers keep track of all the different clients. The inside tasting room is small, especially compared to the tasting room at Jonathan Edwards (our more local winery) but they have two outside areas with seating where tastings are done.  We chose a half tasting (6 wines, which is equal to a bit over one glass of wine) and to stay inside because the sun kept going behind clouds and it was a blustery, chilly day.

We thought the decorations and setting of the tasting room were unique - more like you were sitting in someone's home vs. a big open room.

After our tasting we decided to walk to the top of the hill as our server had told us there was a point at the top where you could see both Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  The views were beautiful, even if the vines were bare of grapes!

Beginning to go up the hill

Near the top, looking back

This is the two state view, three if you count that we were standing in Connecticut

Since we had about a 45 minute drive to our next destination, I told Mr. Helen I was going to stop in the ladies room, which turned out to be a unisex facility.  I don't normally take photos of bathrooms but this one was so unique I had to!  Apologies that these are a bit blurry but I was trying to hurry since there was a line outside.

 Close up of the sink

No need for reading materials in this bathroom with all this stuff to look at!  

We left the winery and headed south to make our final stop at B.F. Clyde's Cider Mill, which you have seen before on this blog.  Honestly it's crazy to me how busy this place is now. But they've added on to the old cider mill by building a general store and now are doing hard cider and apple wine tastings so there really is no good time to go when it's not busy.  We got there around 4 p.m. and though they close at 6, there were hundreds of people in line.  So, while Mr. Helen waited in line, I walked around and took some photos.

The actual cider press is located in this building

Apples ready to go into the cider press

Cider & Apple Wine tasting Area - this building used to house a grist mill

Lots and lots of Clyde's branded goods plus Connecticut maple syrup, which I have never seen on sale here before

Pretty soon, Mr. Helen was standing on the steps of the general store so I went and got back in line with him.  The REAL reason we come to Clyde's is for their baked goods - and a cup of ice cold cider.  I wanted to get a pie but they had sold out of them by 2:00 that day. Mr. Helen loves their apple turnovers, but for me (the non-donut person), it's all about the cider donuts.  They sell them so fast you usually get them warm. Just to be open and honest, I always eat two.  Hey, it's something I do once a year!

The Holy Grail

Our adventure took us 6 hours but it was a wonderful way to spend the day.  I hope you've enjoyed it - and if you ever come to Connecticut, now you know where to go and what to do in the fall.


  1. What a wonderful day indeed. If I ever visit you I make sure it's in the fall so you can take me on this trip too. Love it.

  2. I don't know what it is, but I can never get enough of apple stores and cider mills! I just love them - and the donuts! :D

    Sometimes I wished I liked wine because the tastings always seem like such fun.

    That sink is amazing and I want it.

    1. I specifically took that sink photo for you Lori. The minute I walked in that bathroom I actually thought, "Lori would love to see this."

  3. The scenery is absolutely stunning - what a fun day trip! I was just telling Hannah and Jacob that we need to do that more often :D

  4. You live in a neat part of the country. Love seeing the harvest and all the different things, like that sink - so cool!

    Only two donuts? Ida probably had four!

  5. Love that scene of the three states! Plus, I do like that first room that you showed. How fun to have a room decorated like that.

    I think it was because of you and Lori that I had my first cider donut last fall. And now I am daydreaming about having one this year!

  6. What a wonderful day! :-) I drooled a bit on my computer screen over the donut....thanks! ha ha ha