Mémoire des Vins Suisses: Bern 2017

It’s time once again to raid the cellars of generous MDVS members who, each year, invite wine media types, professionals and knowledgeable enthusiasts to taste through a mini-vertical of one of their signature wines. This year’s event was held at the Kursaal Event Center in the lovely capital city of Bern. Kursaal is an impressive meeting space that overlooks the […]

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 […]

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 […]

Parker Does Switzerland — The Wine Advocate Speaks: Part 1 — The Whites

The Robert Parker/Wine Advocate brand couldn’t have timed it any better. First, stir up the usually dignified Swiss wine community with a rare review of 200 or so of its wines, then time publication of the results to coincide with February’s “Matter of Taste” event in Zürich. Voilà, sold out event. Never mind that Parker […]

A Wine of Note: Winzerei Zur Metzg

I’m always in awe of a commentator with enough grace and confidence to fairly describe a wine even when it’s not to their taste. It’s tough to do but rewarding when it happens. This inherently generous act alerts others who may find excitement in the eccentricities and beauty in the perceived shortcomings. Consider this to […]

 Plant Robert: A Tasting at the Cully Bazar

Even though it’s back from the brink, the grape variety known as Plant Robert remains endangered and little known. Absent a timely intervention it would have been lost decades ago to urban sprawl—in 1966 the last parcel in existence was condemned to make way for the A9 autoroute. Today its eight hectares are spread among […]