Posted: September 29, 2012
Down in the Rhône Valley, things really get hopping around this time of year - the agricultural epicenter of Switzerland really kicks into high gear in the fall, as the orchards and vineyards are ursting with activity. For the past 5 years, we have been lucky to get in on the action, helping a friend with 1500 square meters of Gamay vines to harvest his grapes. On the south-facing rive droites, nestled against the cliffs, the Domaine de Fully is a microclimate - with lizards and cacti, very uncharacteristic of the surrounding Alps - but ideal for a vineyard.
This year’s vendange took place on a sunny day, not too hot, but warm enough for the sugars to create an ideal brix. The back-breaking work was rewarded with a picnic lunch in the shade, drinking last year’s vintage with local cheese and sausages, and talking about the winter to come. overall, about 1000kg of grapes were picked, and taken to the cooperative press. Small-plot vignerons throughout the Valley did the same, and the viticultural tradition of the Valais continued as it has for 1000 years.