Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Vineyard at Strawberry Hill

The Vineyard at Strawberry Hill was not covered in my book, because I discovered it too late in the publishing process. I would like to correct that right now.

Robert Summer is a music industry executive who has been president of RCA Records and Sony Music International. He and his wife Susan Summer have been collecting fine art since before the 1980s.

"It was a time when everyone was collecting American art, and we looked at our collection and felt that what we really enjoyed were the young artists from Glasgow, so we thought going forward we would do a collection of figurative art" from British painters, Mrs. Summer told Alistair Highet in the September 2003 issue of Preview Connecticut.

Mrs. Summers told Highet that the young painters being featured in a particular exhibit "knew how to put paint to canvas, and of course the prices were a minor amount when compared to what they were asking in the states at the time." According to Highet, “The Summers' collection -- Stephen Campbell, Peter Howson, Adrien Wieszniewski among them -- then inspired a more ambitious idea. In the 1990s, the couple ran a kind of artists' residency program out of an old mill building in Bantam, where they invited young British artists to come and paint for a year, all expenses paid. The open studio events during those years were some of the most exciting art events in Connecticut, and many of those painters have gone on to prominent careers.”

These are the people who own The Vineyard at Strawberry Ridge, possibly one of the most beautiful vineyards in New England, along with Greenvale and Sakonnet, and that is saying something. In September of 2004, The Vineyard at Strawberry Ridge was recognized as a "Favorite Find" in the fall 2004 issue of Town & Country Travel Magazine. It’s that beautiful.

The Vineyard at Strawberry Ridge is located on 22 acres of hilly terrain overlooking Lake Waramaug in northwestern Connecticut. They’ve been making it for approximately 10 or more years. The crush, barrel aging and bottling, is performed under our supervision at a modern off premise facility in North Stonington, Connecticut.

The Chardonnay has been their signature wine. It is a small quantity production that has found excellent placement among restaurants around the New York City metropolitan area and beyond. They have recently released a 100% cabernet sauvignon. Both are dry and classic, as the Summer’s prefer classic wines.

At the recent CRITICS CHALLENGE 2006 WINE COMPETITION, The Vineyard At Strawberry Ridge received the Critics Award for their 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon 'Ascot Reserve' California. Nick Passmore wrote, “Appealingly sweet fruit balanced by a hint of fine minerality.” The 2003 Chardonnay 'Ascot Reserve' Western Connecticut Highlands also won the Critic’s Award. “Crisp, bright and lemony notes marry in a juicy chardonnay,” wrote Leslie Sbrocco.

According to their website, “In a first for Connecticut wine, Ascot Reserve has penetrated the international market and can now be found on the wine list at the new Wynn Resort in Macau.”

Their wines can be bought at Zachy’s, as well as ordered in these fine restaurants:

New York Restaurants
Atlantic Grill
Bao 111
Bella Blue
Bruno Jamais
Chin Chin
Coco Pazzo
David Burke & Donatella
Il Monello

Le Cirque
Jean Georges
Mandarin Oriental Hotel
Manhattan Grill
Nice Matin
Paris Match
PJ Clarks
Restaurant 212
Rue 57
Serafina Fabulous Grill
Strip House
Il Valentino

Westchester County and Eastern Long Island Restaurants
Equus Restaurant at the Castle on the Hudson
Haiku, Bronxville
Harry's Oyster Bar, Hartsdale
Mulinos, White Plains
Saracen, Wainscott
Savana's, Southhampton
Scarborough Fair, Bronxville
Trotters, White Plains
Underhill Crossing, Bronxville

Connecticut Restaurants
Boulders Inn, New Preston
Columbus Park, Stamford
Elm Street Oyster House, Greenwich
Mayflower Inn, Washington
Oliva, New Preston
Petite Syrah, New Preston
West Street Grill, Litchfield
Woodward House, Bethlehem

National Establishments
Bellagio Las Vegas: Le Cirque, Circo
Beverly Hills Peninsula Hotel, Beverly Hills CA
Cafe Blue, Scottsdale AZ
LA Farms, Los Angeles CA
Wynn Las Vegas Hotel: Alex Restaurant, The Country Club Grill, Daniel Boulud Bistro

Vineyard at Strawberry Ridge
23 Strawberry Ridge Rd.
Warren, CT 06754
United States Map
Phone (860) 868-0370
Fax 860-868-0772