Swiss Wine Regions

Grand Prix du Vin Suisse, 2008

No state support, no regional pre-selections, and no quotas, the Grand Prix du Vin Suisse competition is open to all Swiss wine producers, and reflects the eclectic range of Swiss wines. For the 2008 Grand Prix du Vin Suisse, 460 Swiss wine producers provided 1,860 wines for judging in 11 categories.This is a In a 20% increase over last year.

The competition, organized by Vinea and wine magazine Vinum, took place June 24-27 in Sierre, Valais. Adhering to international standards set by the Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin (OIV) and the Union Internationale des Oenologues (UIOE), the 120 judges tasted, ranked and awarded the Gold, Silver and Bronze medals as well as honorable mentions.

Winners will be announced November 7, 2008 at the Swiss Wine Night in Zurich. The Grand Prix du Vin Suisse award-winning wines will be featured in the Vinum wine magazine and be highlighted in the 2009-2010 Swiss Wine Guide, which for the first time have an English edition.

The Wine Grapes of Switzerland

Amigne

Amigne was brought to Switzerland by the Romans. This grape can also produce a Sauternes-like late harvest wine. These wines are ready to drink in two to three years, but some can be aged.

Humagne Blanche

Only planted in Valais today, Humagne blanche* is another of the very old Swiss grapes, probably brought in by the Romans. Having a high iron content, and supposedly health-giving properties, this wine was decreed a “health wine” (Krankenwein) for centuries. The old written documents in which this wine is referred to as vinum hum-anum date from the 12th and 14th Centuries. It’s also called Kinderbettenwein or baby crib wine. I’ll bet those kids didn’t have much to cry about.

*no relation to the Humagne Rouge

Completer

Completer is probably the same grape as Lafnetscha from Haut-Valais. It is a rare indigenous vine to the Gräubunden area. Used in the Valais and Grisons regions to make aromatic wine blends with some aging ability.

Burgundy for Kings, Champagne for Duchesses, and claret for Gentlemen

French Proverb

Swiss Alps, cows, wine bottle and large clock face in Bern, Switzerland

Fine Swiss Wine

Discover Switzerland’s odd grapes, small producers, and eclectic tastes