LAUSANNE, SWITZERLAND – Féchy’s famed Vigne du Monde wine will soon have a startling 58 grape varieties in it, thanks to vines planted by New Zealand (link in French) this weekend in the Vigne du Monde, or world vineyard, planted in front of the village church. Lucky visitors to the Fete du raisin will have the rare chance to sample and buy the wine, with the money going to a charity, Sentinel, selected by this year’s godfather, Raymond Burki, who is a well-known media cartoonist/artist who will be autographing the bottles.
The village makes only 150 bottles of each vintage because of the small size of the vineyard. They sell for CHF30 each.
The village began inviting wine regions from around the world to contribute typical vines in 1996, with La Savoie from France as the first, followed by Turkey and Georgia. A vine parcel that belonged to the commune, just below the 11th century church and with a view overlooking Lake Geneva and the Alps, was redone to create a space for La Vigne du Monde.
The UK was the 2010 guest and planted Riesling Sylvaner, Seyval blanc and Dornfelder. “The goal was to create contacts with producers in other countries,” says Jean-Luc Kursner, president of the Féchy wine producers association. The Féchy appellation is considered one of the finest in the region, given the excellence of the terroir (the combination of soil and micro-climate, including sun exposure, precipitation, wind and elevation), but the growers felt that a small region in a small country would benefit from reaching out.
The villages’ vineyards were classed in 1971 as a Swiss historical protected site and landscape.
Every year a wine is made from the grapes harvested from the growing number of vines, a wine that more than anything reflects the terroir where the grapes are grown.
“Everything is pressed as a white wine,” says Kursner. The result is a wine “like those made from our own grapes,” he notes, because the producers in the village follow the same basic approach they use for making their own wines. “Pleasant, good aromas, light fruits, slightly bubbly (carbonic).”