Your Fresh Local Market Through Time

As a pioneer in the New Canaan retail scene, family-owned and operated Walter Stewart’s Market takes pride in setting high standards for quality and dependability.

Founded in 1907 by an enterprising young grocer from Ireland, family patriarch, Walter Stewart, opened his “cash and carry” store on Main Street opposite Town Hall. Groceries were delivered by horse and wagon, later by Model T. Over the next 20 years Stewart established eight more stores, but the Depression forced Stewart to sell all but the original Main Street store.

His son, Walter Stewart Sr., took the helm in 1933 and shepherded the store’s development and later its expansion. The present iconic building on Elm Street was launched in 1957. The building’s unique concrete-dome and extensive glass windows were designed by Victor Christ-Janer, acontemporary of the famed Harvard Five architects.

The business continued to prosper and grow under the leadership of Walter Sr.’s son, Robert ‘Bailey’, who expanded the physical plant and adding a wine and liquor shop in 1974. Current owners Alex and Doug, Bailey’s nephews, have run the day-to-day operations for over 20 years.

Fourth generation owners, Alex and Doug, Bailey’s nephews, have run the day-to-day operations for over 20 years.

Alex, previously manager of Stewart’s Wine & Spirits, serves as President & General Manager, Doug as Vice President & Marketing Director.

The brothers recently spearheaded an extensive remodeling and expansion of the market. They added a state-of-the-art kitchen, hot and cold prepared foods, artisanal cheese section and salad bars. They also increased space for local and organic produce. The first phase saw the relocation of Stewart’s Wine & Spirits across the market parking area to a contemporary glass-fronted shop. This new location is twice the former space and offers an expanded selection of wine, craft beer and craft spirits.


As an integral part of the community fabric, Walter Stewart’s gives back by sponsoring many of our customers’ favorite local organizations.

Every year we are proud to support the New Canaan Scholarship Foundation, the ABC House of New Canaan, the New Canaan Food Pantry, Filling in the Blanks, the Young Women’s League of New Canaan, the New Canaan Community Foundation and many more local charitable organizations. We are most excited at the prospect of serving all of your needs for generations to come.

New Canaan has supported our family-run business for four generations and in return, being active in our community by giving back is a core WSM value.