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You will find Chasselas wines bearing the name of the grape and their place of origin but also many such as Neuchatel without the grape variety, and even some with traditional names such as Fendant and Perlan. Chasselas also possesses a number of famous crus, some of which are no greater than the vineyards of a single village or even a hamlet such as Dezaley, Epesses, Yvome, and Aigle.

Such diversity is possible because the Chasselas grapes are fairly neutral in themselves and therefore take on the character of their terroir. The better the terroir, the better the wine. Alongside the dominant role of Chasselas, Pinot Noir and Gamay are playing an increasingly important role for red Swiss wines. While the area cultivated for white Swiss wines grows slowly, there has been explosive growth in planting of vines for red wines in recent years. This may be related to the increasing demand for red Swiss wines and the lifting of imports of red wine that has already occurred (whites in 2002) which has seen Swiss Francs flooding abroad. At present a great deal of French Cotes du Rhone, Beaujolais, and Burgundy is imported. It is therefore not so surprising that increasing amounts of Syrah, Pinot Noir, and Gamay are being planted. It is worth noting that Valais is actually situated high in the Rhone valley and that its climate varies little with that of the Prench Rhone region.

Suisse Romande Wine Region

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