Let's start with the premise that, in the Hartford area, you're not going to get top, top quality menswear (you can forget about Kiton, Oxxford, Borrelli, etc.). If you want really top quality in Connecticut, you have to go down to the southern part of the state and visit Mitchell's or Richard's. That said, there are some good menswear stores in the Hartford area.
- Stackpole Moore Tryon in Hartford - probably the best independent men's store in the area (although they carry women's clothing, too), including having one of the best shoe selections in the area, tied with Brooks Brothers mentioned below (Stackpole probably tops out at Ferragamo and Alden). A good place to get nice, mostly conservative, dress and casual clothing. I think suits top out at Zegna or equivalent brands.
- Tuesdays in Hartford - more fashion forward than Stackpole - I think they do a lot of Zegna by Coppley suits - I've never been there, but they do nice window displays - shoe selection doesn't look very good (top out at Donald J. Pliner)
- Allen Collins - West Hartford - probably the tradest shop in the Hartford area - they have a nice selection of dress and casual attire - pretty conservative, however - no shoes
- Cuzzi's - West Hartford - Italian styling - I don't usually go there, but they have more of an Italian/European flair - I think they carry shoes by Allen Edmonds, which I find surprising given the overall feel of the store
- Khaki & Black - West Hartford - streetwear (men's and women's)
- Nordstrom and Brooks Brothers - Westfarms Mall, West Hartford - the Brooks Brothers is about what you'd expect at a mall BB (limited selection, no Golden Fleece), but they do have a shoe department, so they carry some Alden and Peal - the Nordstrom is okay, but it's not like going to Nordstrom in San Francisco or some other large, metropolitan area (their casual wear department has been taken over by Tommy Bahama - it's kind of depressing) - the mall also has all of the "usual suspects" (J. Crew, Banana Republic, The Gap, etc.)
- J. Press - New Haven - the original trad store, if that's your thing - only about a 45 minute drive from Hartford
- For shoes, I really recommend The Shoe Mart in Norwalk - this is pretty far from Hartford, but the service is great - again, not top, top line stuff, but some good quality shoes (Alden, AE) with great service - I've never actually been there, but done business with them over the phone and on the web.