Switzerland’s vineyards are lush and dramatic in summer, with their mountain, river and lake backdrops. Be a braver wine tourist and enjoy them in winter! You can still hike, since few of them are high enough to be buried in snow for more than a few hours or days.
Vignerons – the grower-producers who make up a large part of the wine producer population, are out in the vineyards pruning whenever the sun is out, and it’s a golden opportunity to ask them how this helps their wines. Hint: winter pruning is the first step of the process to guide the grapevine’s sap to what will become productive shoots. A vine left to its own devices becomes wildly overgrown and may give far too many grapes, with inferior quality.
Here is the true landscape of Swiss wine, where extraordinary geography and human hands meet, a continuation of a culture that reaches far back in time, in history.
Be a slightly lazier tourist, like me for the past month, traveling in Valais and Vaud, and study the vineyards from the warmth of a Swiss train. We are spoiled in this country, aren’t we?