Bern, Switzerland (GenevaLunch) – The first analyses of the 2009 Swiss wine vintage, in November, showed them to be very promising, but the federal agriculture department’s end of the year gift to the wine business 31 December was its confirmation that 2009 was not just very good, but excellent: one for the records in terms of both quality and quantity.
The quality of 2009 Swiss wines deemed “excellent”
The growing season came close to perfection for most producers. A long, cold, snowy winter was followed by an April that brought the vines to life quickly. The summer was hot and dry, starting in June, which led to quick flowering in most wine regions. July was humid, followed by a dry spell that allowed the grapes to mature well. And it remained warm and dry throughout the harvest period, to growers’ delight.
The only problem was a patch of golf-ball size hail that hit some areas in July, notably around Bougy and Aubonne. But Raymond Paccot, one of that area’s top growers, told GenevaLunch today that even for those hit by hail it was an exceptional year. About 50 percent of his grapes in the Bougy-Villars hillside were lost and 20-30 percent around Féchy, but “it didn’t matter in the end because the rest of the season was so good that we were able to make up for it.”
Grape-growing regions harvested 1.1 million hectolitres (1,000 litres, a common unit of wine production measure) of wine grapes, some 35,000 more than in 2008. The growing area remained stable, with 14,841 hectares of vines.
Switzerland’s four largest wine-producing regions in 2009, with over 100,000 hectares of vines:
Canton, growing area in hectares / wine produced (hectolitres)
- Valais, 509,234.38ha / 449,733.54hl
- Vaud, 381,861.48ha / 290,500.91hl
- Geneva, 129,213.00ha / 94,098.53hl
- Ticino, 103,982.90ha / 58,987.09hl