Go to this adorable NC shop and ask for what Karen, the baker/owner, does best: fresh gingerbread. Then sit down, feel the love, and enjoy.
Darien Cheese & Fine Foods
It’s one of the quintessential kitchen stops—and perfect for fall. Go here for charcuterie, imported cheeses and freshly baked bread. On Oct. 25, the owners show their appreciation for customers with an Octoberfest event that will floor you.
The Vanilla Chai Latte, a comfy blanket, and some seltzer at NEAT in Darien.
HOT Adult Beverages
NEAT has wonderful iced coffee for summer, sure…but cappuccino and the Sidecar (ask for it) are hot drinks to warm you during colder climes. Also, NEAT has seltzer- and still-water taps. Get a big glass, chug, refill, repeat. Freely.
Browne & Co’s Pumpkin Spice Coffee
For millions, fall = pumpkin spice latte. Forget the chains: Go local in Darien with Diane Browne’s fall fave. (PS: try the soups or chicken pot pie, too; if you want your room to smell like fall, get Nest’s Pumpkin Chai Candle, at the front of the shop
A view of New Canaan’s Elm Street—perfect for strolling.
In summer, the sun bakes the pavement; in fall, the streets are cool, color-chromed—totally different. Window displays are always filled with brilliance: Orange being the predominant tint. Take a stroll; it’s a beautiful browse.
Pumpkin Patches & Fall Festivals
The Darien Fall Fest is on Nov. 1; and Rowayton’s Harvest Fair, at the United Methodist Church, is coming soon…
Best spots, IMHO…in NC: Drive (or walk/run) into NC town center via Route 123 from Norwalk, continuing along 124 toward Pound Ridge, NY. In Darien, head out of town around Noroton Heights and, well, just get lost (happens fast). In Rowayton, travel from Norwalk’s Flax Hill Road to Highland Avenue and avoid the shore by finding grassier fields (keep an eye out for deer and local artists painting en plein air).
Elm Street Books’s main stacks
Autumn means putting your thinking cap on and digging into the new literary award-bait! In Darien, Barrett Bookstore has the fix, while New Canaan’s Elm Street Books will set you on your way. Note: This is also the time of year when local libraries ramp up their free programs, so enjoy film, author events and public readings, too!
Sweaters, Hoodies, Layers
A GREAT thing about fall is: If it’s too cold, put on a sweater; if it’s too hot, take it off. LAYERS! Stroll up NC’s Elm Street and the Post Road in Darien to hit the shops for that thirsty sweater you need. The wool and knit rollout will is an annual ritual.
Flea: Peanut Butter Cups
Delicious and little-known! This hidden Rowayton gem—tucked away in a garage—also has fab salads in the wonderful setting.
“Solmate Socks” at Noroton Heights’s Wild Birds Unlimited
Solmate Socks—mismatched “fall” socks. COZY! Get them at Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop. Awesome.
158B Rowayton Ave, (203) 286-6673
Gingerbitz Bakery, New Canaan
155 Elm St, (203) 801-0281
Browne & Co., Darien
865 Boston Post Road, (203) 656-1920
Barrett Bookstore, Darien
314 Heights Rd, (203) 655-2712
Elm Street Books, New Canaan
35 Elm St, (203) 966-4545
Espresso NEAT, Darien
20 Grove St, (203) 202-7215
Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop, Darien
365 Heights Road, (203) 202-2669