Saltwater Farm Vineyard.
Saltwater Farm is in the sleepy seaside town of Stonington, and its owners look to preserve the history of their property as "coastal Connecticut farmland and a WWII-era private airport." It is a beautiful property that overlooks the tidal salt marshes of Wequetequock Cove and traces its agrarian roots back more than 350 years to the founding of Stonington in the mid-1600s, according to the winery.
Winemaker Gilles Martin is a Frenchman who lives and works in Long Island, New York. He is also the winemaker at several vineyards on the island’s North Fork
They have a lot of weddings at Saltwater Farm, like many wineries, but Bride’s Magazine voted Saltwater Farm as one of the most romantic wedding venues in the U.S. The winery should be open for the season by now. If you will be in the area this summer, check out the Connecticut Wine Festival in July.
The wine has a lovely golden color, showing some age and oak. The nose is somewhat muted, but fascinating, nonetheless. An earthy tone drapes over some Meyer lemon, oak spice and a beautiful caramel note. The palate is great, not too oaky - just enough - and a very clean and full mouth. The citrus note advances first, followed by that incredible earth with a creme brulee finish. And the acidity is zippy, too. I could hardly ask for more from a Chardonnay than what is delivered here.
It’s a fairly dark wine, with a nose showing cherry, mocha, just a hint of oak, a slight trace of earthy salinity and a smoky element that often makes its way out of a glass of Merlot. It's not an extremely forceful nose, but there’s quite a lot going on in it. Some of that has to do with 16 months of oak aging. The taste of this 100% Merlot is what I expect from a cool climate red wine, restrained and food-friendly, with a nice acidity and a flavor that leans more towards tart than ripe, although it isn't far from the midpoint of that scale. It's a great wine to have with food, that's for sure. Coffee notes are a great find on the finish.