I didn’t really expect to fall in love with these little towns when I planned this trip, but I fell hard and I fell fast. We kept driving past properties with “For Sale” signs and I couldn’t help but wonder what these properties were going for. It would be a horrid commute and it’s totally unrealistic, but it was nice to day dream about living in such a beautiful place as I was driving along. I always say “rural is rural” – driving in rural Wisconsin where Pete grew up looks just like driving in rural Pennsylvania where I spent summer vacations as a kid, which looks just like driving in rural Virginia where my parents live now. Rural is rural. But this rural? Rural that is minutes from the ocean? It is not the same rural. There are rivers and harbors that sneak up on you as you go around a bend in the road, and you catch yourself gasping at the sudden change from lush, green landscapes to sparkling, blue seascapes. It is amazing, and it is an entirely different kind of beautiful than I was prepared for. If I had been by myself, I would have pulled over a million times to take photos.
First order of business: re-caffeinate Pete at Coastal Roasters, which appears to be the place to be on a Saturday morning. Next order of business: visit the cheese store. I’m me, so the cheese store was a priority. Milk & Honey Bazaar did not disappoint, I could have spent a thousand dollars on all the tasty cheeses they had (and for the record, 10:00am is not to early to be sampling cheeses). I ended up buying two local cheeses – one from Massachusetts and one from Rhode Island – after being assured that with a freezer pack and an insulated bag they would definitely be okay in the car for the day.
We left the car at Milk & Honey and walked along to the intersection that is Tiverton Four Corners. After browsing through a few stores and a gallery in Tiverton Four Corners, we ended up skipping out on poking through most of the shops and galleries that were on our plan for the rest of the day and we focused on getting our drink on – three wine tastings and one beer tasting.
I could go on for hours about the wineries we saw, but I’ll spare you the details and summarize: our first stop was Sakonnet Vineyards in Little Compton, RI. Everything we tasted was pretty great, and both of the women that poured for us were helpful and friendly. We walked out with a bottle of sparkling and a bottle of white, and I’ve already finished the bottle of white. I can’t tell you how sad I was when I poured the last glass!
The next stop was Westport Rivers Winery, in Wesport, MA, which I knew was one my parents liked. They have three different sparkling wines, which I’m sure is why Mom is a fan! The wines were okay, but the tasting as a whole was the worst of the day (which is not to say that it was bad, just that it wasn’t as great an experience as these others, which were great) – they were busy and the staff seemed to be a little overwhelmed trying to keep up with the tours and sales and tastings. We didn’t love any of the wines enough to wait in a long line, so we moved on to the next stop, which was all about Pete.
Just Beer is owned by the same folks as Westport Rivers, and you may have heard of them by their former name, Buzzards Bay Brewing Company. The brewery was a five minute drive from Westport Rivers, and Pete was happy to try out the beers they had on tap. Meanwhile, I played with the brewery dog, who is pretty adorable. Pete ended up walking out with two cases of their winter stout (it was discounted so they could make room for a new beer).
Our last stop was Coastal Vineyards. Which is amazing…and in the owner’s backyard and basement. It is, by no means, the quality of wine you would expect to come out of some guy’s basement. It is, by all means, our favorite from this trip. I left with only one bottle of wine, not because I didn’t want to buy more but because by then I had already spent most of the money I had set aside for the days adventure. I’ll be hunting down these wines locally so I can keep drinking them. If you don’t want to do the other two wineries in the area…fine, don’t. But do this one. It was so much fun, and the wines were great.
I can’t wait to spend more time along the Farm Coast…next time including the beach! If you’re interested in visiting the Farm Coast (and I hope you are!), I found the info on at farmcoast.com to be super helpful. I also found this guide for the area on Design*Sponge, which has a lot of duplicate information with a few additions. And if all you care about is the booze, you need to check out the Coastal Wine Trail.
In case you are too far away to plan your own trip, You can find more pictures from ours over on Flickr!
**I hope this post doesn’t sound like an advertisement – it isn’t, I swear! I just like to share when I find things I love, and I found a lot of things I loved on the Farm Coast!