Burgundy Eyes Alternative varieties | News and features of Wine-Searcher
We collect all the news that you may have missed this week and discover the great novelties of Burgundy.
Another important passage this week as the wine world bid farewell to Spanish pioneer Alejandro Fernández and we took a look at some of the world’s best pinot noir (a grape whose days could one day be numbered in Burgundy, as we see below). W. Blake Gray reported that tasting room fees were skyrocketing in California, while sake sales appeared to be climbing in the rest of the country.
Elsewhere, all kinds of things have happened this week. In France alone, the winegrowers of the Entre-deux-Mers appellation have started to make noise to authorize the title dry-white-only to accept red wines; Cognac posted record export figures despite the pandemic; Frenchman Anthony Malot has started a wine-themed board game called Pépite (“bijou” or “nugget” – a common French term used to describe a surprisingly good bottle of wine); and another Frenchman, Guillaume Etienne, launched a range of scented candles with each scent based on the bouquet of an individual grape variety.
And that’s not all. Here’s what you might have missed in the past seven days:
Burgundy turns to alternatives to pinot and chardonnay
As part of a series of ideas put forward by the Burgundians to fight against the ever increasing threats of climate change (drought, frost, hail and tourism), it emerged this week that the region was officially looking for alternatives to Pinot Noir and with chardonnay. on the Côte d’Or.
Frédéric Barnier, vice-president of the technical commission of the BIVB, told the French news agency France3 that his team already had a pre-selection.
“We already have a shortlist of 20 candidates that we will try to narrow down,” he said. “We look at pinot, but not just pinot. We are also looking at other related varieties. It could also be foreign varieties. […] Now is the time to ask these questions. “
Possible neighboring varieties include those from the Yonne department, the custodian of some of the cooler climate regions of Burgundy: Chablis and Irancy. Two rare grape varieties from the department – both from Pinot Noir – were mentioned. These are the Roublot blanc and the César rouge.
“These are varieties with limited potential sugar levels, more acidity, and that could be interesting. [to trial them]», Said specialist ampelographer Jean-Michel Boursiquot to the press.
France3 also said the outside possibilities included Savagnin du Jura whose “balance and potential acidity could be interesting”, while Syrah, Nebbiolo and Xinomavro were all “under consideration”. The chain was quick to point out that currently only five percent of the vineyard area was allowed to be used for testing.
In addition, there is currently more emphasis on the selection of rootstocks. Given that 95% of Burgundy vines are found on one of only five rootstocks, the BIVB wants to increase diversity while examining the possibility of trying rootstocks suitable for harsher climatic conditions and / or resistance to certain diseases.
Up to 20 new rootstocks have been proposed (14 of which are classified as “advantageous”) alongside adapted viticulture methods (alternative pruning, training and subsequent pruning time).
However, testing of new grapes is also following a general trend across France. Bordeaux has already started testing new varieties and, as we reported earlier this month, experimental plantings of foreign grapes have started in the south of the country.
The Champagne museum reopens after 23 years
The Champagne and Regional Archeology Museum of Epernay was officially reopened on Thursday, 23 years after it closed due to security concerns in 1998. Located in the town’s impressive Château Perrier (named after owner Charles Perrier , who ran the Perrier-Jouët champagne house in the middle). 1800), the museum houses more than 6,000 objects related to the history of viticulture and winemaking in the region. It’s unclear how much overlap there is between the two collections, but there are reports that some artifacts may even predate Brut Nature fashion.
The core of the museum’s collection was established at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century and initially included archaeological finds and works of art. It lacked a formal house until the castle was acquired in the mid-20th century.
Built in the 1850s, the castle served as a residence for Perrier until his death in 1878. It then belonged to Henri Gallice and in 1930 it was bought by the Viscount of Châtellus.
Not always known for their ground-based insight, the British Royal Air Force outdid themselves by establishing a headquarters in the castle during the Battle of France. The site is a cork-pop distance from the main buildings of Moët & Chandon, Perrier-Jouët and Pol Roger to name a few.
Whether or not location affected the performance of the RAF in battle (the combination of cellars and headquarters is, anecdotally, something of martial tradition) and whether the occupation of the class Whether or not an Anglo-Saxon officer prompted the sale of the castle to the city council in 1943 are questions whose answers are fortunately lost in time.
The museum was officially installed in the building in 1950 while its extensive network of cellars (which has connections to the local rail network) was sold to Perrier-Jouët. According to reports, maintenance issues forced its closure in 1998 and more than € 20 million has been spent on renovations over the past decade.
Although the museum was due to open in November 2020, it has been relocated due to Covid. It opened to the public yesterday (Saturday May 29).
© Getty Images
Switzerland makes offer to restrict imports
Winegrowers’ groups from the Valais, Vaud and Geneva regions in Switzerland have called for restrictions on imports of foreign wines, saying current import levels are being exceeded. The Valais Wine Trade Organization (IVV) sparked the movement, claiming that the original import laws, which date back 25 years, were passed when wine consumption was at higher levels than today. . He also added that international promotions of EU wines are subsidized by Brussels and therefore domestic competition is unfair.
According to the Valais radio news station Rhône FM, the IVV requests that import volumes go from 170 million to 143 million liters. Swiss producers say they have lost market share and that the wine industry is threatened. The proposal must be submitted to the World Trade Organization (WTO) although no date has been published.
Iran in the spotlight
It wasn’t just the news that Napa Valley heavyweight Darioush Winery was sponsoring the Victoria & Albert Museum’s ‘Epic Iran’ exhibit (which opened this weekend in London) – from label to label. cellar, the company does not hide its Persian roots. There was news that an expatriate Iranian orthodontist was bringing some Shiraz to Bergerac in southwestern France.
Masrour Makaremi is from Shiraz (the city) and is about to market his own Shiraz, a 100% Syrah made at Vignobles Dubard in the adopted region of Bergerac / Montravel in Makaremi. Nicknamed “Cyrhus “(as in Cyrus the Great, King of Persia – which historically predates Darius but in terms of wine labels comes some time behind the Darius of Darioush), the wine is due out in June.
The wine is aged in amphorae, of course, and, according to vitisphere.com, only 559 bottles will be available (559 BCE was the year Cyrus the Great ascended to the throne as King of Persia).
“I was born in Shiraz,” says Makaremi. “My destiny was written around the Shiraz grape.”
Peruvian winery launches orange wine inspired by Sophia Loren
In what must be an impressive blend of natural wine in contact with the skin; questionable labeling; and an unwarranted connection to celebrities, Peruvian winery Bodegas Murga has launched “Sophia L’Orange” – an orange wine “inspired” by 1960s screen icon Sophia Loren. The wine is a blend of Quebranta (better known as the main grape behind Peruvian Pisco brandy) and Mollar (a local name for Negramoll), and the label features a feminine hourglass figure. Dubious pun included, the connection between wine and the Italian screen icon isn’t immediately clear. No more, moreover, “inspiration”.
Argentinian video “Wine unites us” stirs up discord
A video produced by the Mendoza wine promotion organization (Fondo Vitivinicola) has been removed after its content was deemed too crude and disrespectful by the national group of wine companies, Bodegas de Argentina. The video, a parody using Monty-Pythonesque’s cut-out animation, asks what Argentina’s May 1810 founding revolution would have looked like if there had been wine (and disco balls).
In a statement released on Wednesday, the Bodegas de Argentina objected to the short saying, “it shows Argentinian heroes rallying at the call of the first national government in a situation around wine, which, far from being praised. [the beverage], show it in pictures and words in the context of abusive and unwanted consumption, in the midst of a patriotic exploit.
For its part, the Fondo Vitivinicola declared that the video was “a small tribute to the revolutionaries of 1810 and also to the current revolutionaries, committed to innovation, who do not stop at challenges and who turn them into opportunities, guaranteeing our national drink is closer to consumers ”.
In what can only be described as a delectable irony, the clip ends with the slogan “El vino nos une” (wine unites us). See it for yourself [in Spanish]: