29 years

While working at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. in themid-1960’s, Nick founded a wine study group. At a going-away party, Nick raised his wine glass and said “ some day, I would love to have my own wine in my glass.” After 25 more years in banking in New York and London, and newly-married to Happy, they moved to Stonington and learned that wine grapes were growing here, and wineries were sprouting up all over Connecticut. A mid-life crisis—or more specifically—a dream come true when Nick bought 58 acres of land on which a small young vineyard existed. Stonington Vineyards was born and Nick and Happy became farmers!

The first year, 1987, Stonington had a severe frost on May 23rd (the latest in recalled history) which killed most of the primary vine shoots and fruit clusters. Lesson #1: Mother Nature rules.

On July 4th, 1987, Mike McAndrew joined us as winemaker.
His sage advice and common sense came in handy when reconfiguring the vineyards and constructing the new winery.
Over the past 25 years, Mike has consistently fashioned elegant, food-friendly European-style wines…most notably our Chardonnays. We have grown slowly, with the emphasis on quality not quantity. We produce 5,000-7000 cases per year and sell about 90% of our production at retail from our tasting room.

Now, in their 70’s, Nick and Happy still live at the winery and relish their lifestyle. It’s fun to look out over the vineyards and witness the many varieties of birds and animals and savor the silence. All seasons have a special implication and many memories! But the best is when the aroma of fully ripened fruit wafts from the vines. Harvest time is the culmination of another season!