Meet Blake Leonard! - Westport Moms

How old are your kids and how long have you lived in the area? I have 2 boys – ages 4 and 3 – and a 9-month-old daughter. My husband and I moved in temporarily with my parents during Covid and then never left. I grew up in Westport and quite literally never thought I would be back. I even married a French guy, but we’re here and couldn’t be happier!

How did you end up where you are now in terms of your job, or whatever passion project it is you might be doing? I grew up with parents who were incredibly passionate about food, traveling and wine. I fell in love with the wine industry because there’s always something new to learn, so I became a certified sommelier while at the Culinary Institute in Napa.  I worked for many other families in the wine business, including the Gallos, before I made the decision to come back and work for my own family, running our wine stores. It’s not always easy (especially the family part) but I love working with the multi-generational families in the wine business and the relationships I’ve created.  It’s just a fun industry! Wine can seem really intimidating and part of what I want to do is make it less so.  Drink what you like!

On a more personal note, when I was 3 years old, my little brother died in a drowning accident, and subsequently my parents created the Stew Leonard III Water Safety Foundation. It has funded over a quarter of a million swim lessons for underprivileged children around the nation. In exciting news, my family is opening our first swim school this June (right next to our wine store at 55 Westport Ave in Norwalk) this June and we are giving a free trial class to anyone who pre-registers HERE!

What was your best memory from the last few COVID years, a strange time we know…I spent most of it pregnant, so eating a lot soft serve ice cream from Stew’s and having my babies! 

What is the best show you have recently watched? My husband Edouard and I are currently watching Yellowstone together.  It’s slow going but we finally made it through season 2!

What is your favorite podcast? How I Built This with Guy Raz I love learning about how entrepreneurs built their brands.

What is one food you could not live without? Sushi!  My favorite is OKO for special occasions.

What is one product you could not live without? Shampoo. I’m a must wash my hair everyday kind of gal!

What is your greatest fear? Sharks!  It doesn’t stop me from swimming, but I’m still terrified.

What is your greatest indulgence? Wine with a really good charcuterie board. 

Which talent would you most like to have? Dancing, because I have zero rhythm! Something about my moves (or lack thereof) must be impressive though because my first date with my now husband was a salsa class.  

What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you? I lost my little brother on my 3rd birthday in a drowning accident. I don’t remember him too well, but what I do remember is how my parents coped— they created the Stew Leonard III Water Safety Foundation.  It has funded over a quarter of a million swim lessons for underprivileged children around the nation. It wasn’t until I became a parent to my oldest son, Romeo, that I could for the first time even comprehend what they went through. If my little brother knew how to float, he’d still be alive today. We are blessed to live in such a beautiful beachside community, but with pools and warmer beach days ahead, it’s a constant reminder for me and my family.  My parents have pounded into my head to never take my eyes off our children around water—including bathtubs, beaches, pools, or really any body of water. My family is opening our first swim school this month (right next to our wine store at 55 Westport Avenue in Norwalk). The first lesson is free when you sign up at!

If you weren’t doing what you are today, what might your career path might have been? I love food and traveling, but secretly I’ve always wanted to work for the CIA!

If you could travel to one place this next year, where would it be and why? San Miguel de Allende. I’ve heard amazing things about the architecture, the food and of course all of the local tequila!  

If you had 24 hours to do whatever you wanted to do, what would it be? I would sleep and get massages.

Are you a morning person, or a night owl? How does sleep fit into your life? Once upon a time, I was a morning person! Most nights I stay up later than I plan to and wake up early. Of course now that my 9 month old daughter is sleeping through the night, my 4-year-old wakes up at 5:30!

What thing has surprised you most about being in the suburbs? I can’t get over how many fellow Westporters I’ve met who loved growing up here but also never thought they would move back. AND, the food scene! 

What is the first thing you do when you walk in the door after a long day? Get trampled by my three little monkeys!

Who is your favorite hero of fiction? Who are your heroes in real life? Ted Lasso for his nuggets of wisdom and comedic relief, and my mom for raising 4 girls.

At a movie: Candy or Popcorn? POPCORN
Cook or order in? Order in, but wish I was cooking more!
Cake or Ice Cream? Ice Cream!
Iced Coffee or Hot Coffee?  Iced!
Beach or Mountains? Beach!
Puzzle or Board Game? Board Game!
Wine or a Cocktail (if cocktail, which one?) Nope, can’t pick one! I love light whites, medium bodied reds and Aperol Spritzes.
Reading or writing? Reading, but it feels like one page at a time these days
Before bed: Social media or book/TV? Usually buying something on Amazon.
Watch or play sports? Play!
Stay in or go out? Go out!
Comedy or Drama?  Comedy!

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