WALLINGFORD — Two local wineries are preparing to participate in the CT Winter Wine Trail set to begin later this month.
“We are so excited that it is finally going to be restarting,” Paradise Hills co-owner Margaret Ruggiero–Mena said. “It brings local grape growers together and really helps support local businesses.”
The Winter Wine Trail Passport Program encourages participants to visit 12 different wineries in the state from January to April and get their passport stamped at each location. By the end, those that have visited each of the wineries are entered for a chance to win a variety of prizes.
Although it was previously announced the start date would be Jan. 9, the Wine Trail announced on Facebook that because of the pandemic there are delays delivering passports.
“Please stay tuned for a new start date hopefully later this month,” the post said. “Thank you for your understanding during these COVID times. We assure you it will be worth the wait.”
Locally, Paradise Hills and Gouveia Vineyards are both participants. Others include Jonathan Edwards Winery in North Stonington and Aquila’s Nest Vineyard in Newtown.
Gouveia Vineyard’s winter hours are Sunday to Thursday,11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Paradise Hills is open every day year-round with indoor and outdoor seating. The hours are currently Monday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“Being on the trail is a great asset for grape growers,” Ruggiero–Mena said. “We come together and do something positive especially during these tough times with COVID.”
Ruggiero – Mena said being a part of the trail also helps wineries during the winter because it could encourage people to come out to wineries who otherwise wouldn’t have.
“People are always looking for something to do,” she said.