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SALTWATER FARM WEDDING // ALANA + MATT

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We are happy to feature the classically stunning wedding of Alana and Matt who said their “I do’s” in June at Saltwater Farm Vineyard. Below, photos from Joshua Behan capture the glowing couple and beautiful blooms by floral designer, Yumiko, of Hana Floral Design. View the full post from Yumiko here. Lanterns and peonies and blue sky, oh my!

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Cheers to Alana and Matt and all of our June couples,
KP

 

JULY INSTAWEEKEND

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It was a great weekend in the tasting room. People mingled upstairs while others took a walk down to the water or enjoyed a picnic outside on the patio. As always we love finding your photos on Instagram… here are a few of our favorites from the weekend.

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via @johnhassettphotography // wedding decor

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via @a_new_england_girl // view from the other side

via @cdelguzzi // enjoying wine on the patio… lovin the selfie!

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via @karihorton // a killer sky during the wedding ceremony for andy and dani

via @johnhassettphotography // one beautiful bouquet

via @johnhassettphotography // one beautiful bouquet

 

via @ga.shu // weekend winery fun!

via @ga.shu // weekend winery fun!

Keep ‘em coming!

Cheers to warm summer days,
KP

SWOONER, STONINGTON BORO

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Swooner, the Boro’s latest culinary addition, opened its doors the beginning of May. The restaurant instantly caused a buzz in the area, replacing their landmark predecessor, Skippers Dock. Everyone was curious and anxious to see the changes, including my husband and I.

I was never shy about telling Saltwater Farm visitors to try “Skippers” for a cocktail and the incredible view. Their deck has been attracting visitors from all over New England (and beyond) for years. Many were sad to see an end to a restaurant they had grown to love, but excited for what was to come… and Swooner delivered.

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To be fair, I typically like to give a new restaurant some time to iron out the wrinkles, but there we were, just a few weeks after opening, pulling into their freshly ­paved lot.

I immediately fell in love with the cedar shakes.

I immediately fell in love with the cedar shakes.

The sun had slipped away but we stopped quickly to enjoy that unchanged million dollar view off the (new) wrap-around deck before stepping inside for dinner. Happily, there is plenty of seating, but for those who wish to dine al fresco be sure to arrive early during peak summer months (reservations are for parties of 7 or more only).

Million dollar view of the Stonington Harbor.

Million dollar view of the Stonington Harbor.

The interior resembles little of what once was; guests are greeted by a refreshing neutral color palette with chic details and coastal touches throughout. This is a place where I wanted to sit and stay a while. Undoubtedly, you will too.

As we were whisked past the bar area and into the dining room, we couldn’t help but notice the gorgeous marble bar top (with built-in RAW BAR!). There is no substitute when it comes to fresh oysters and seafood, is there?!

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swooner7From the capiz shell light fixtures to the fresh pine floor boards I felt right at home. The whitewashed walls and lofted ceiling are grounded by dark grey bead board and, tucked at each booth, cozy throw pillows perfect for people of smaller stature like myself (thank you for that touch).

My husband Mark and I each indulged in a signature cocktail. For him, the Dock ­N­ Stormy and for me, the Gin Dandy. While mine was not entirely “Dandy” (missing the splash of simple syrup), Mark was loving his.

Now, let’s get serious and talk food.

swooner3SOUP + SALAD

Mark had the New England Oyster Chowder (an obvious choice). One spoonful made him stop, look at me a little too seriously, and nod. That means it was good friends, really good. Swooner makes their own bacon and it was laced throughout this beautifully done chowder.

I had the Kale Salad which was incredibly fresh, vibrant, perfectly dressed, and topped with fried shavings of garlic. There was an earthy, citrusy, savory sensation happening in each bite and I would go there again just for this, a few oysters, and a glass of wine…

SNACKS + SMALL PLATES

We shared the Steamed Littleneck Clams hooked by the “pork belly” element noted on the menu. The clams were nestled into their bowl of beer broth with bits of crispy house­made pork belly scattered throughout. We were excited to dive right in, but the salt content ended up being a bit too high for our palates.

Jake, the gracious General Manager, surprised us with the Lobster Salad off of the raw bar menu. It was beautifully presented, yet a bit of a challenge to eat… I ended up chasing bits of lobster around the bed of ice (much to Marks amusement, of course). In the end, the sweet flavor of lobster that I love so much was lost to the herb vinaigrette.

Lobster Salad

Lobster Salad

MAINS

Mark had the Roasted Pork Chop­ intrigued by the hen-­of-­the-­woods mushroom. Moist? Check. Fork tender? Check. Residual brine? Check. The pork chop had great potential, minus residual brine. Our neighboring diners shared with us an unprovoked, similar sentiment.

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I chose Pappardelle with Classic Bolognese (the smaller portion). Bolognese is something I make quite often at home, so I couldn’t pass up a chance to try Swooners take on the ‘classic.’ Much to my surprise, and enjoyment, they used fresh pasta in their richly flavorful, belly warming entrée.

DESSERT

Here is where things got GOOD. If you are on the hunt for a dessert ­only date, Swooner is your spot.

swooner10Mark had the Apple Fritters, which were made-to-order and absolutely ‘Swoon’­worthy accompanied by a fresh, mostly ­vanilla semifreddo (think lightly frozen custard).

I enjoyed the EVOO Torrijas accompanied by dark chocolate ice cream, cinnamon, coffee, and Maldon salt. Need I say more?

Together we shared a glass of Sauternes, which complimented our desserts beautifully.

Admittedly, it has been a few weeks since our last visit. There are some quirks that may need to be worked out of the menu, but this tastefully remodeled farm-­to-­table restaurant will please the palates of generations to come.

Don’t forget to take a stroll down to “The Point” and stick your toes in the sand at Dubois Beach for a truly memorable evening.

Cheers to being swooned,
KR

Swooner
66 Water Street // Stonington, CT // 860.415.8123