Middlebury, New Haven County, Connecticut
The feeling of being secreted away in a private enclave in Provence belies the very central and convenient location of this extraordinary property in Middlebury. Admire the lush fenced pasture and pond framing the long driveway that ends in a gracious circle at the historic and charming house.
The ‘formal’ entrance brings you through a door surmounted by a handsome bull’s eye transom into the large L-shaped living room that includes a wet bar with refrigerator and a gracious old fireplace. Tucked into the “L” is a former parlor, now used as an office, that offers access to a cool, covered bluestone terrace overlooking the rolling lawns, stonework, shuffleboard court, and gardens. Proceed to the family room, warm and lovely with tongue-in-groove paneling, chestnut flooring, fireplace with beehive oven, and an intriguing old coffin door.
A covered porch of fieldstone bestrewn with charming and old-fashioned plantings brings family into the stone floor mudroom with manifold built-ins and hooks and even a chest for boots that is prewired for electric boot warmers. Hard by is the large and classic laundry room – a relic with lots of built-in storage, soaking sink, surfaces for folding, a dedicated ironing board closet, and pantry storage.
The kitchen is a gourmet’s dream; the renovated space that gleams with cutting-edge Viking appliances, convection oven, ice maker, and granite counters is warmly tempered with burnished honey-hued wood flooring and handsome wainscoting.
The charm continues upstairs: two master suites with separate full baths, five adorable bedrooms, two cedar closets, and a paneled linen area. One of the master bedrooms offers a newly renovated sitting room and built-in closets. One pair of bedrooms is divided by a pocket door, thus enabling it to transform into a bedroom/sitting room suite or to remain totally separate sleeping chambers.
Having traversed the length of the upstairs, you descend a second stairway, embellished with whimsical stenciling, back down into the kitchen.
The basement has a cement floor and Bilco doors; a commercial furnace, overhauled in 2009, deftly manages the three heat zones in the house. There are also holding tanks for the well, a water treatment system, and a dehumidifier, along with two 275 gallon oil tanks. Plenty of storage and shelving is available, along with a naturally cool wine cave.
A large and venerable cow barn is now used as storage, office, and bay for farm utility apparatus. Of post and beam construction, it features chestnut lathes and plenty of charm. It was in this barn that the previous owner conceived and implemented the wildly successful Alcort Sailfish/Sunfish sensation in the early sixties.
To the left and behind the barn is the 100’ X 200’ dressage riding ring. This ring is laid with stone dust and rubber footing to accommodate serious equestrians and their mounts.
Another equestrian premium is the direct access, via the back part of the property, to the Larkin Bridal Trail.
Adjunct to the barn is a handsome wood and brick five-bay garage. Hidden behind this building lies, in total privacy and enchantment, the beguiling guest cottage. Framed by old lilacs and mature planting, the cottage offers 2 bedrooms, one and ½ baths, attic, basement, washer/dryer, and its own septic.
Attractive and inviting sitting nooks are tucked into the lush green gardens, pastures, and meadows and framed by mature and lovely lilacs, fruit trees, and other mature plantings.
Please notice a slight rise in the landscape that forms a mound overlooking the shuffleboard court: this was an early 19th cave, excavated into the hill for storage of ice cut from Lake Quassapaug and hauled over by wagon.
This majestic property is a triumph of olden & new, sylvan & meadow, privacy & accessibility and is, simply, utter enchantment. It is a bewitching fusion of warm paneling, chestnut flooring, fireplaces, and cozy living with modern, bright, and fresh convenience.
Sindy Butkus, Klemm Real Estate, Inc