GENEVA, SWITZERLAND / AMONG THE VINES – “Des Meilleurs Vins des supermarchés de Suisse romande”, 2014 guide, arrived in my mailbox yesterday and it’s one of the most useful little wine books I’ve seen in ages. Alexandre Truffer is the editor of the French language version of Zurich-based European wine revue Vinum, a very active wine journalist. I’ve worked with him on a number of projects and we’ve often tasted wines together and worked as judges at the same wine competitions.
In short, I trust his judgement.
The latest of the four books by Truffer, published by Creative Publishing, is a compact 113 pages, a personal and easy to follow selection of the best wines from four supermarkets, Coop, Dener, Aldi, Manor. It’s in French, but anyone can work out the basics thanks to the icons, and if your French isn’t strong, consider this a good wine vocabulary builder.
The wines are slotted into three price categories – the same ones I generally use when I recommend wines – under CHF10, CHF10-20, over CHF20. They include wines from abroad, but 50 percent of the wines are Swiss, a good balance given the offer by the stores themselves. They are also rated with a 5-star system.
The first 25 pages offer helpful guidance, short and to the point, on the stores themselves, how wine is made, how to taste wine and more.
I have only one niggling complaint and that is that he doesn’t make it clear enough that Manor’s wines often vary considerably from one store to another because one of its strong points is the emphasis on local wines. I like to buy wine at the Chavannes-de-Bogis Manor and the one in Sierre. The first has some fine Geneva and Vaud wines, the second a good collection of Valais wines.
I was happy to find one of my favourites in there and to spot a wine I don’t know, which I’ll be trying soon. But I’ll save the details for you to discover!