Arvine Gringe (Petite Arvine) 2017
AOC Valais (Vétroz), Didier Joris, 750 ml
This wine will amaze you and your guests and provide sheer delight – a gift from nature enhanced by Didier Joris' masterly skill! Not an everyday wine, but reserved for a special occasion. Its minerality compensates for its fullness and opulence, which manifests itself in aromas such as acacia honey, ripe apricot, candied orange, lemon balm and caramel. An incredibly long and multifaceted pleasure.
|Origin:||Switzerland / Wallis|
|Grape variety:||Petite Arvine|
|Ripening potential:||1 to 6 years|
|Drinking temperature:||10 to 12 °C|
|Food Pairing:||Bouillabaisse, Spicy hard cheese, Giant crevettes, grilled langoustines, Mushroom ragout|
|Vinification:||partly destemmed, long must fermentation, fermentation in steel tank, soft pressing|
|Harvest:||hand-picking, strict selection, in small boxes|
|Maturation:||in partly new and used barriques/ Pièces, on the yeast, long cultivation|
Didier Joris is a legendary figure in the Valais, where the history of wine would be unthinkable without him. He grew up in a farming family that initially concentrated on raising cattle. To this very day, Didier still raves about «his Queens», the Hérens fighting cows. It was only during the 1960s and 1970s that the Joris family began to terrace slopes to plant vines and cultivate vineyards.
As the family did not have much expertise in this sector at that time, young Didier attended the Agricultural College of Châteauneuf. From there he went on to complete an internship in Germany, where he not only gained experience in viticulture, but also as a baker, butcher and in wine laboratories. After qualifying at Changins, he began working as a lecturer and researcher at the College of Oenology and Viticulture at the age of 21. He taught such greats as Marie-Thérèse Chappaz, Jean-René Germanier, Denis Mercier, Marie Bernard Gillioz and numerous other talents.
A grain of salt
The white Petite Arvine is the diva of Swiss grapes. It thrives only in the very best sites of Valais: sunny and sheltered from wind, not too dry, but not too moist. No wonder they were almost extinct. For convenience, vintners replaced the delicate plants from the beginning of the last century with more low-maintenance varieties. Their rebirth in the 1990s is thanks to dedicated companies that recognized the unique profile of this primordial Valais variety. Their hallmarks are aromas of grapefruit and rhubarb, paired with a tangy acidity and a curious, slightly salty touch at the end – like a grain of fleur de sel on the tongue. The Petite Arvine is mostly made into a dry wine, but as a sweet wine it offers a fantastic, sweet-spicy taste experience.
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.
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.