Wine World Switzerland 2016
A paradise for wine gourmets Small but mighty – a statement that is widespread among Swiss wine experts. Switzerland offers a great variety of popular and international types of grapes, but also some treasures that are not be found anywhere else around the globe.
Main Photo: Rivaz, a wine village on Lake Geneva. Left: In the vineyards of Epesses on Lake Geneva. Middle: Morning mood in the vineyards, Lavaux. Right: The vineyards of St. Saphorin.
TEXT: MONIQUE AMEND | PHOTOS: SWITZERLAND TOURISM, MARCUS GYGER
sorts are well liked. Swiss wines will usually be drunk at a very young stage of maturity which emphasises the typicity of the sorts and enables the tasting of used blossoms, fruits and spices.
The Swiss people are known to be culinary gourmets, therefore they do not compromise when it comes to the quality of their wine for dining or an enjoyable evening. It is therefore useful that they are able to grow and process a unique variety of grapes in their own country. In total, an area of 14,836 hectares throughout Switzerland’s 26 cantons is used for the vineyard cultivation. As different as these areas are in their scenery, they are just as different in their kind of soil. Among them are the calcareous Jurassic, the molasse and the abundant slate soils which ensure - together with a sunny but protected location - the successful grape harvest.
Besides the well-known varieties, Switzerland also offers some real treasures and insider’s tips among the wines, so called autochthonous or indigenous ones. These are about 40 different real rarities that are ancient and nowhere else to be found all over the world. The winegrowing is constantly on a developing path. Varieties that are in demand internationally become a bigger part in the cultivation but also Swiss new breeds, like the Gamaret and the Garanoir, are more appreciated among consumers. The Wine World of Switzerland will offer the perfect wine for everybody to enjoy other Swiss national culinary specialities as chocolate or cheese.
The three biggest wine cantons are located in the Southwestern part of Switzerland bordering France and Italy. There is almost one third of the whole national cultivation area in Wallis, where the red grapes are dominant with more than 60 per cent. The second biggest wine canton is Waadt, which concentrates more on green grapes, followed in size by the canton of Geneva. The most popular types of wine are the Pinot Noir (Blauburgunder) and the Riesling Silvaner (Mueller-Thurgau). But also the Raeuschling from Zurich, the Completer from Graubuenden, as well as Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc and many other
Issue 38 | May 2016 | 27