Profile: Domaine La Colombe (Féchy, La Côte, Vaud)

  While Lavaux primps and preens for the camera, its sibling, La Côte, is quietly at work behind the scenes. With nearly three times the vines of Lavaux, La Côte receives only a fraction of the attention. It has no dramatic terraces to seduce camera-laden tourists and no Grand Cru AOC’s to offer. Its languid vineyards flow gently […]

Desperately Seeking Chasselas: San Francisco, California (Part 3)

Lady Chasselas 2013, Mylène Bru, Vin de France: This is the third in a series of adventures wherein the peripatetic author seeks out chasselas in unlikely foreign venues. As we all know Switzerland’s native white grape is not well represented outside of its home country but when it is found elsewhere duty and allegiance demand that I […]

A Wine of Note: Cave Caloz (Miège, Valais)

Syrah, Les Bernunes 2015, Cave Caloz, Valais If not for a recent Côte-Rôtie tasting and roadshow in Geneva I might have skipped over this little gem from the other “roasted slope” above Sierre in Valais. To be honest, syrah tends to be invisible. It’s usually presented in an off-handed way or as an afterthought when there […]

The Hailstone Shield: Anathema to Organic and Biodynamic Vineyards?

Recently the Association National d’Etude et de Lutte contre les Fléaux Atmosphériques (ANELFA) announced the purchase and installation of 125 silver iodide generators in a no-holds-barred effort to thwart the occurrence of destructive hail storms in the vineyards of Burgundy. On the surface this would appear to be a wise investment but is there an ancillary cost?  At least one commentator thinks so. Wine-influencer Tom […]

Chardonnay in Switzerland: No Respect

To the casual observer of Swiss wine the primacy of pinot noir among the red varieties suggests that its stablemate, chardonnay, enjoys the same favored status among the whites. Nothing could be further from the truth. Even though chardonnay ranks as the fifth most planted variety in the world—almost 200,000 hectares spread among countless winemaking nations—it’s monopolized by […]

The True Cost of Cheap Wine

Since everyone seems to be weighing in on the Bianca Bosker-Cork Dork controversy I’d like to add my own two cents. I’m a bit disappointed that we missed a great opportunity for constructive debate, but I’m truly beside myself that what little discussion took place turned frivolous with petty charges of wine snobbery and elitism. Crowded out were the critical issues […]

Salvagnin or Servagnin: Which Is It?

There’s almost never a thought given to the rare benefits of the Black Death pandemic of the Middle Ages but the existence of Servagnin de Morges is one of them. The story begins more than 600 years ago in France with one of the most consequential edicts in wine history: (The Duke of Burgundy) Philip the […]