AOC Wallis, Bonvin, 2019
Floweriness (in this case with notes of lavender and magnolia), fruitiness (sour cherry) and spiciness (bay, thyme) balance each other out. A light touch of tobacco and fine leather give it that special something. The Humagne Rouge is not ostentatious, but an elegant, well- balanced wine with subtle tannins.
|Origin:||Schweiz / Wallis|
|Grape variety:||Humagne rouge|
|Ripening potential:||2 to 4 years|
|Serving temperature:||16 to 18 °C|
|Food pairing suggestion:||Rabbit ragout with olives, Roast saddle of venison, Beef Stroganoff, Wild specialities, Spicy hard cheese|
|Vinification:||fully destemmed, short must fermentation, fermentation in steel tank, pressed carefully and immediately|
|Harvest:||hand-picking, strict selection|
|Maturation:||in steel tank|
|Maturation duration:||8 months|
Switzerland – A small country with enormous diversity
Switzerland is famous for its banks, watches, and cheese, but not necessarily for its wine. The Swiss didn't invent wine, but they have been extremely open and curious to it. Wine culture arrived in what is now modern Switzerland via several routes: from Marseilles to Lake Geneva and the Lower Valais region; from the Aosta Valley through the Great St. Bernard Pass to the rest of Valais; from the Rhone through Burgundy, across the Jura Mountains to Lake Constance; and from Lombardy to Ticino, and then on to Grisons.
Valais: Alpine wines with class
More than 20 varieties of grapes can yield wines in Valais that are full of character. A large number of them grow on spectacular, steep slopes. Sealed off by mighty chains of mountains, old plantings like Petite Arvine, Amigne and Cornalin have survived in Valais, and today they are highly sought-after by wine enthusiasts. The highest vineyards in Europe are also found in Valais: the Savignin vines (known here as “Heida”), rooted in the mountain community of Visperterminen.
High above Sion, on the Clos du Château, is the heart of the oldest wine trading house in Valais – today's winery Charles Bonvin SA. The view sweeps over the wide Rhone valley, meets the two castle hills of Tourbillon and Valère and grazes on the magnificent Valais vine landscape with its countless terraces.
In the mid-19th century, Valais was a poor area. The valley was largely marshland. The people, mostly farmers, mainly subsisted from agriculture and the dairy industry. The wineries were set up where nothing else could be grown. The vineyard was smaller than the one in Zurich and the yield was mostly for self-consumption. The Valais wine couldn't leave its borders, although it had been cultivated since Roman times.
With this wine, you have a choice. Either drink it young, when its lush berry fruit dominates, or wait three to five years and experience its wild side. Even when young the Humagne rouge demonstrates echoes of tree bark and animal hide. These aromas truly come into their own with maturation. They are joined by hints of smoke, brushwood and pepper. The question of where it fits seems almost unnecessary: in the wild, of course. Its origins are confusing. The Humagne grape variety should have actually been called Cornalin. It is identical to the Cornalin from the Italian Aosta Valley. Another Valais grape – the Rouge du Pays – was erroneously named after this, which in turn operates mostly as Cornalin. Thus they are both falsely named.