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Connecticut's Best Local Secrets 2012

Connecticut’s Best Local Secrets 2012
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Yankee Magazine chooses Connecticut’s best local secrets for 2012.

BEST MICRODISTILLERY
Onyx Spirits Company, Manchester
Moonshine’s rising, but no problem, it’s legal. Vodka and limoncello flow fine, too. Set up in Hilliard Mills, where Civil War blankets were once produced; today bottles filled here warm thirsty palates. 640 Hilliard St. 860-550-1939; onyxspirits.com

BEST QUIET PLACE
Thurber House, Putnam
Named for the artist whose paintings add to the charm of this two-centuries-old colonial B&B set on a peaceful hill. Settle on the shady back porch or beside the sitting-room fireplace. Rates: from $90. 78 Liberty Way. 860-928-6776

BEST TEMPTING TASTES
O’live A Little Import & Gourmet, South Windsor
Explore the specialties of the house, gathered from around the world, by taste-testing more than four dozen flavors, from strawberry-balsamic vinegar to ginger-infused olive oil. Freshly bottled on site. 85 Evergreen Way. 860-648-1292; olivealittle.com

BEST MORNING MUSIC & MUNCHIES
Mansfield General Store, Mansfield Center
Any day of the week, shoppers may pick up home-baked treats, antique treasures, and works by local artists. Sunday’s all-you-can-eat brunch is a buffet backed up by local musicians. Brunch entrees: from $10.99. 534 Storrs Road. 860-450-0597; mansfieldgeneralstore.com

BEST NATURE STUDY
Westside Nature Preserve, Danbury
Pathways wind through 33 rolling acres of brooks, wetlands, wildflowers, and trees at the edge of a university campus. Prep by checking out online photos or consult information stations along the trails. University Blvd. 203-837-8794; wcsu.edu/wnp

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