Red Wine in the Valais

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Submitted By andreasmilling
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The Valais is the largest wine area in Switzerland. The area of hectares cultivated to grapevine in the Valais is the largest in Switzerland. The location of the Valais, between the high mountains of the Alps to the North, East and South the, gives the vineyard a special shelter from the frizzing winds. The vineyards are sculptured alongside, the sides of the mountains, which give them the ultimate sun exposer (Schuster, n.d.). So with the help from the mountains, the vineyards are kept dry and warm, which accelerate the growth of the grapes. “The Valais receives the least amount of rain and the most amount of sun out of all the wine regions in Switzerland.”

From the town of Varen down to Martigny will you be able to see vineyard, almost in one unending stretch. You will find he vineyards on all levels of the soil. The span of altitude, range from 460 meters to 1150 meters above sea level. ( The Valais is an area where you will find a lot of different grapes, actually more than 50 grape varieties. Of those 50, 4 grape varieties really dominate the area. Those 4 are Chasselas (Fendant), Pinot Noir, Gamay and Sylvaner (Johannisberg). “The Big Four” covers 90 % of the vineyard surface area. Chasselas is the most dominating grape and covers 45%. ( The total wine-producing surface area is shared between almost 120’000 parcels of land belonging to nearly 23,000 owners, less than 20 % of whom work the vineyards full time The main type of wine produced in the Valais is dessert wines. The vintners of the Valais have a long culture of specialising in making dessert wines. As previously described, the arid and thermal conditions course by the mountains makes it possible for the vintners to keep the grapes on the vine until late in the year. This gives the harvest a very high content of sugar. In 1996, the “Charta Grain Noble…...

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