Litchfield Hills Wine Market
 Update June 18, 2020
(Curbside service only until further notice)  
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We'll continue to add new items as they become available.   

We are happy to take orders over the phone and have the wine brought out to your car when you arrive.  Just call 860-361-6700 to order and to let us know you've arrived!
* Hours of operation will be Monday-Saturday 9-6 and Sunday 11-5
* We are not accepting bottle returns at this time.
* We regret we cannot make deliveries at this time due to additional demands on our staff and for the health and safety of all of us. 

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New and Noteworthy

Domaine Mégard Pommard 2016  $59.99 
Les Vignots is an "Appelation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC)" from the village of Pommard in Côte d'Or at an elevation of 300 meters. Limestone based earth with good drainage.
Very popular since the XIX century, Pommard has a rich history. It offers a deep red ruby color and a robe with purple lights."This is the fight between day and night" (Victor Hugo)

Blueberry, blackcurrant and prune aromas are the most common. With maturity you will discover some leather, chocolate and spices as well. This is a wine which matures with age. Texture is round. Delicate but strong and balanced structure. Some fruits will remain in the mouth after the first taste.

Enjoy this wine with strong meats. Beef, buffalo, lamb, pheasant. Will accompany cheeses with some strong characters such as Epoisses, Comté, Reblochon. Serve at 57-60 F.
Patrick Miolane Saint Aubin 2016 $39.99
The Miolane estate is an ancient family-run business, which has been handed down through the generations. Patrick Miolane took control in 1983, and now works with his daughter Barbara, who joined the team in 2005. They make a perfect pair, each responsible for their own sphere of activity.

 The Miolane estate consists of nine hectares of vineyards at Saint-Aubin, a village in the prestigious Côte des Blancs area. Growing mainly white wines, they produce fourteen Saint-Aubin, Chassagne-Montrachet and Puligny-Montrachet appellations, including premier cru, villages and regional wines.

 Patrick and Barbara Miolane work the whole of the estate on lutte raisonnée principles, with the aim of conserving the environment and reducing chemical treatments to a minimum. The vines themselves are carefully and expertly managed.

Opihr Oriental Spiced Gin $36.99

Ophir is a legendary region famed for its wealth and riches which prospered during the reign of King Solomon. The King regularly received cargoes of gold, silver and spices from Ophir and whilst its exact location remains a mystery, it is thought to have been in the Orient along the Ancient Spice Route - a network of sea routes that link the East with the West.

The routes stretch from the West coast of Japan through the Islands of Indonesia, around India and the Middle East - and from there, across the Mediterranean and into Europe. Traditionally merchants would travel thousands of miles along the route, trading exotic spices and botanicals from distant lands.

OPIHR Oriental Spiced Gin is crafted with a selection of exotic hand-picked botanicals, carefully chosen by OPIHR's Master Distiller, including spicy Cubeb berries from Indonesia, Black Pepper from India and Coriander from Morocco.
Vatan Toro, Spain  $39.99
Traditional dry farmed viticulture. Practicing organic gobelet (vaso) trained vines, cultivated completely by hand. Vatan is the pure representation of the oldest clone of Tempranillo in Spain, from some of the oldest ungrafted vines in the country, located in the only Spanish D.O. that completely resisted the phylloxera plague. During the Middle Ages, Toro was Spain's most famous winemaking region. Mentioned in literature by Alfonso IX (King of León, 12th c.), Juan Ruiz the Archpriest of Hita, Quevedo, Luis de Góngora, and Miguel de Cervantes. In 14th Century Sevilla, the sale of any foreign wine was prohibited, save the wines of Toro. These wines accompanied Spanish explorers to the New World. D.O. Toro was rediscovered in the 1990's by the Numanthia project, masterminded by Jorge Ordóñez and the Eguren family.

Firm and dense, this red delivers rich flavors of blackberry, fig, cocoa, licorice and mineral, set in a thick texture, supported by well-integrated tannins and kept lively by balsamic acidity. Savory, even austere, yet harmonious and complete.  Best from 2022 through 2036. Wine Spectator 93 points. (Pictured is the wood box it's packed in - yours with the case of 12)  

Spottswoode Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2017  $239 (very limited)
Since 1982, the family's Napa Valley vineyard has consistently yielded an Estate Cabernet Sauvignon that exudes elegant power, effusive blackberry fruit and spice, naturally refined tannins, and extraordinary color. Beautiful, elegant, age-worthy, and impeccably balanced, it is widely recognized as one of the finest Cabernet Sauvignons in the world.
(Wine Advocate 97+ points)

Spottswoode Lyndenhurst Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 $89
Lyndenhurst was one in a succession of names given to the estate that became known as Spottswoode in 1910. Fragrant linden trees that surrounded a gazebo in the late 1800s provided the inspiration for the name, which also embellished the beautiful arched gate at the entrance to the Estate. Although only the center pole of the gazebo remains, the linden trees still bloom in the Estate gardens today.

Winemaker Notes: With crimson fruits and bramble, the 2017 Lyndenhurst unveils aromas of fresh thyme, cedar, lilac, juniper, and a wild understory. Fine, silken tannins entice the palate through an array of textures. All the while, a resonating acidity brings dynamism and precision through this wine's long, layered progression. This is a wine with a refined poise in youth with a unique ability to offer enjoyment in its early years.

Spottswoode Sauvignon Blanc 2018 $39
Highly acclaimed and considered one of the "Super Sauvignons" (a term coined by wine writer Karen MacNeil to describe a rare class of wines considered to be among the world's utmost expressions of this noble grape), Spottswoode's exceptional, classically styled Sauvignon Blanc has been produced since 1984.

Crafted using grapes from the Spottswoode Estate, as well as those from other iconic family-owned vineyards. Fermented in a combination of French oak, small stainless steel barrels, a clay amphora, and one ceramic and two concrete cuves, the resulting wine is an eminently drinkable yet cellar-worthy Sauvignon that is both stately and sublime, with extraordinary aromas, effortless poise, and remarkable complexity. It is why noted wine writers have written that "Spottswoode has turned Sauvignon Blanc into an art form," and have hailed this wine as one of America's or the world's "best Sauvignon Blancs," calling it the "aristocracy of domestic Sauvignon Blanc."

Winemaker Notes: This Sauvignon Blanc jumps out of the glass with pink grapefruit, Asian pear, white peach, lemon oil, lime leaf, and lemongrass aromatics. The palate confirms the nose and is extremely bright and tense, showing great balance. Bright guava, juicy stone fruit, and hints of pineapple pair with a grapefruit acidity that lead to a long finish. Frequent lees bâtonnage adds a level of creaminess and more layers of complexity. Showing beautifully now, this wine also has the structure and sophistication to age gracefully for enjoyment in the future. 
Recipe of the Week
Rosé Wine Mussels

2 tablespoons butter
1 shallot finely sliced
2 garlic cloves finely crushed
1 tablespoon thyme finely chopped
2 1/2 pounds mussels (fresh, alive, debearded)
1 1/2 cups rosé wine
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon parsley finely chopped

Heat butter in a large Dutch oven until it's melted.
Add shallot, garlic and thyme and cook 1 minute until fragrant.
Deglaze the pan by pouring in the rosé and use a wooden spoon to gently stir the bottom of the pan to release all the flavors.
Add the stock and stir.
Lastly, add the mussels in and bring to the boil.
Cover, reduce heat to medium and cook 5-8 minutes, or until mussels have opened up. The mussels should be firm to the touch.
Remove and serve immediately with fresh, crusty bread and garnish with the parsley.

Serve with your favorite dry rosé!
International Rosé Exploration

Rosé can be made anywhere great wines are produced.  We carry mouthwatering rosés from France (Provence, Tavel, Bandol, Loire Valley, Pays d'oc), Spain, Italy, California, Oregon, Portugal, Austria, South Africa and even Morocco!  Here are just a few we carry from around the world.

Withers, El Dorado, California $23.
WINEMAKER NOTES - This Bandol-inspired Rosé is a beauty, featuring aromas and flavors of citrus and stone fruits, highlighted by cherry, watermelon rind, grapefruit, nectarine and peach flavors. The Wine has firm balancing acidity and both inviting aromas and a long finish on the palate. The medium bodied frame is layered, textured, balanced and elegant, and the wine will drink well on release or age for 5-7 years. It is a perfect accompaniment to a wide variety of seafood, pasta and fowl and best served at or slightly above cellar temperature. Top pick in the Wall Street Journal by Lettie Teague.

Domaine Sahari, Morocco $13.99
The Domaine de Sahari is a classic Mediterranean blend of Cinsault and Grenache. This rosé is a vin gris - a unique style of rosé in which red grapes are gently pressed and then immediately taken off the skins; there is no maceration time like many traditional rosés. All berries are hand-harvested and fermented in stainless steel to preserve the bright fruit flavors of the wine. This results in an appealing, extremely pale color, and the Sahari is the lightest shade of pink. On the nose, aromas of strawberry, peach and white flowers erupt from the glass. On the palate, the Domaine de Sahari rosé is energetic and focused with a zippy acidity and added flavors of fresh melon and a subtle warm spice note. The finish is long and flavorful with thosegorgeous fruit flavors washing across the palate, complimented by an underlying chalky minerality. This rosé is much more than a curiosity: it is a refreshing, rich and complex wine to be enjoyed the same as a classic rosé from any other part of the Mediterranean.

J. Mourat, Loire Valley, France $14.99
Vignobles Mourat was created in 1974 with the purchase of the Chateau Marie de Fou estate by Jérémie Mourat's father. The distinctive, squat, bottle reproduces a 17th Century one Jérémie Mourat discovered in the cellar of the old building that now houses his office. From the Western Loire Valley appellation of Fiefs Vendeens, this ripe and juicy blend of Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, and Negrette shows off ripe aromas of crushed cherry and watermelon and a touch of fresh herb.  A big mouthful of cherry/berry fruit with a just right lift of tangy citrus leads to a lip smacking, crisp - almost tart - finish with juicy flavors of fresh watermelon, watermelon pickle, and tangy berry.  This will sing with hearty picnic food like cold fried chicken or late afternoon nibbles like salami and cheese and is just as fun to pour by itself and just admire - especially in the throw-back old-school bottle.  Great stuff to sip or enjoy with any spring or summer meal. Organic.

Gobelsberg Rosé $16.99
For the Cistercien Rosé, the Zweigelt, St. Laurent and Pinot Noir grapes grown in the cooler sites of Gobelburg and Langenlois are used.
After the harvest, the grapes - still with their stems - are softly pressed and then fermented. This type of rosé is somewhat similar to a white wine because no acid reduction is used to emphasise the fine fruity character with a streamlined elegance. Its fragrance and fruit nuances of wild cherry and fresh berries make this Rosé an optimal universal food companion.

Cocktails of the Week
Fruit with Gin or Bourbon

Gin and Grapefruit Cocktail
- 50ml
- 75ml grapefruit juice
- Dash angostura bitters
- Half a pinch Maldon sea salt
Dry shake the salt, grapefruit and gin for 10 seconds
Pour over an ice-filled tumbler
Garnish with fresh oregano
Berry & Rosé Gin Cocktail
-50ml rosé Gin
-100ml Good Lemonade
- Berries to Garnish
Fill a copa glass with ice.
Pour in gin and top up with lemonade or premium tonic water.
Garnish with a berry of choice

Strawberry Basil Bourbon Smash
Using a muddler, mash strawberries, simple syrup, fresh basil, and lemon juice in a cocktail glass until the strawberries release most of their juice
Add bourbon and ice; stir to combine
Top with sparkling water
Enjoy immediately

Blackberry, Thyme, Lemon Bourbon Cocktail
   4 blackberries fresh
   2 oz. thyme-infused simple syrup see 'notes' for directions
   1 oz. fresh lemon juice
   3 oz. bourbon I used a rye
   crushed ice
   lemon wheel for garnish
   fresh thyme sprig for garnish
Combine fresh blackberries and thyme-infused simple syrup to a cocktail shaker. Muddle thoroughly.
Add lemon juice, bourbon, and a few ice cubes. Shake vigorously, breaking some of the ice cubes inside the shaker to ensure    
     it's nice and cold.
Fill two cocktail glasses halfway full of crushed ice. Strain cocktail directly onto crushed ice. Garnish with lemon wheel and fresh thyme sprig.

Terroir Spotlight
Toro Spain

  One would be hard-pressed to name another region in Spain that produces wines as dense, potent and hedonistic as those from this region along the Duero River in western Castilla y León. That's not to say Toro, which has been on the rise over the last 20 years, isn't putting out wines with elegance, style and class.

The region gets its name from a local town, and wines rely largely on the Tinta de Toro clone of Tempranillo. Metaphorically, the reference sits right with the larger-than-life wines: toro means "bull" in Spanish.

It's easy to understand why these wines pack the punch they do. A preponderance of unirrigated bush vines planted up to 125 years ago bask in searing dry heat during a fairly short growing season before yielding small bunches of power-packed grapes. The resulting wines, the best of which age at least 18 months in mostly new French oak, are inky, plush and rich. They have high ­alcohol levels (almost always above 15% abv) and are tannic in structure. In good vintages, they are capable of aging for up to 20 years.
Has this always been the case? Absolutely not. While grapes have flourished in the region for centuries, the lands were never considered prime wine country. When the Toro Denominación de Origen (DO) was approved in 1987, fewer than seven wineries operated in the region. Today, more than 50 wineries do business in this part of ­Zamora Province.

Situated 40 miles east of Portugal, Toro is extreme wine country, with rocky vineyards housing stumpy vines that produce barely two pounds of fruit per plant. While summers are hot and parched, winters in Toro are bone-chilling and tough. Snowmelt gives the vines all the water they will get.

Wineries and vineyards are found on both sides of the Duero River, at elevations ranging from 2,000 to 2,400 feet, but most of Toro's better wineries operate on the warmer southern bank.

One of the leaders in the region's revitalization, the Eguren family, from Rioja, started one of Toro's most acclaimed wineries, Numanthia-­Termes, in the late 1990s. A decade later, the Egurens sold Numanthia-Termes to the LVMH group and used the proceeds to start Teso La Monja. Today, Teso La Monja and Numanthia-Termes are neighbors, and each delivers winning wines year after year.

Another relative newcomer that helped bolster the region's fortunes, Pintia is owned by Vega Sicilia in nearby Ribera del Duero; it bottled its first Toro wine in 2001. More burly, dark and lusty than anything Vega produces in cooler Ribera del Duero, Pintia qualifies as a wine of elegance, something many modern Toro wines can claim along with inherent brawn.

Try the Vatan Toro!

Introducing Sawyer, aka Soybean!
Sawyer is 7 years old and is the sweetest pup you'll ever meet.  He loves kids and other dogs and long walks along the Farmington River. He's a rescue from South Carolina who was puzzled by the Connecticut snow but has adjusted marvelously.  Once we welcome customers back into the store, do say hello!

About Us

 Litchfield Hills Wine Market opened in September, 2010.  Our wonderful staff is here to serve you seven days a week: Monday - Saturday 9 am - 6 pm and Sunday 11 am - 5 pm.  
(We'll go back to extended hours when Covid-19 goes away.)

We carry 1000+ wines, 100+ beers and large selection of spirits. We're also happy to place special orders if you need something we don't have in stock! 
We offer free delivery on cases of wine in Litchfield County.
Litchfield Hills Wine Market
8 Village Green Drive, Litchfield, Conn. 06759     860.361.6700