Swiss Wine Regions

Wine Classification

Estate winery

A United States winery license allowing farms to produce and sell wine on-site, sometimes known as a Farm winery.

Ethyl alcohol

Ethyl alcohol, also called Ethanol, is the primary alcohol in an alcoholic beverage.

Eiswein

German for ice wine, a dessert wine made from frozen grapes.

Dessert wine

Varies by region. In the UK, a very sweet, low alcohol wine. In the US by law, any wine containing over 15% alcohol.

The Wine Grapes of Switzerland

Müller-Thurgau

Developed in Germany by Prof. Müller (from Thurgau), this early maturing white grape variety is one of the principal white grapes cultivated in German-speaking Switzerland. Produces elegant, aromatic wines when grown in cool temperate climates. In warmer locations these qualities tend to be masked by a certain heaviness and lack of acidity.

Freisamer

The Freisamer plays more of a role in Graubünden but has a small presence in a few other cantons. It’s a hybrid of Silvaner x Pinot gris, developed in Freiburg in the Breisgau region. A temperamental grape that puts great demands on the type of soil and location—do I hear you say “terroir”?—it’s been trying to make a name for itself since the sixties but hasn’t really taken off.

Durize

Durize is a red wine grape, possibly indigenous, grown in the Valais district of Switzerland

New loves and old wine, give a man these and he never refines.

Francis Beeding

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