Profile: Cru de l’Hôpital (Môtier, Fribourg)

The angelic mien and soft-spoken pitch of Christian Vessaz, winemaker and director of Cru de l’Hôpital in the village of Môtier, does not fully assuage a gut feeling I have that beneath the reserve are two frantically paddling feet—a not inappropriate image in this lakes region of the Swiss plateau. It also happens to be […]

Ticino Wine Festival

Ticino Wine Festival—Le Richemond—Geneva—November 7, 2016 The current worldwide popularity of merlot, despite many twists and turns, remains unabated. It is the second most widely planted cultivar in the world—cabernet sauvignon is first—and is found in nearly every country where wine is made. It thrives on its own and plays well with others—high-end blends and […]

Mémoire & Friends: Zürich 2016

This year marks an end to the collaboration between Zürich’s Kongresshaus and the Mémoire & Friends annual gathering. One of the city’s most iconic facilities is headed for a retrofit and remodel while event organizers scramble for a new home. As of this writing there is still no secured venue which, sadly, places next year’s […]

Wine with Dinner: Randomly Chosen in October 2016

Nature is clockwork. Just as the grape harvest wraps up in Switzerland the temperatures drop. Fall is here and it is in the air. By all accounts 2016 looks to be another excellent harvest with fine, dry weather until the tail end of the season when there was quite a bit of rain. By that […]

Desperately Seeking Chasselas: San Francisco, California (Part 2)

My supply of chasselas was trending dangerously low even before I reserved the one meal designed to test the limits of its versatility as a jack-of-all–trades wine. It’s all well and good to pair chasselas with fondue, raclette or even a ripe Vacherin Mont d’Or but with arbol, habañero and chipotle chiles? With lime juice? […]