Adrian Mathier Nouveau Salquenen
 Angelo Delea
 Association Viticole d'Ollon
 Brauerei Locher
 Cave au Soleil Levant
 Cave Cidis
 Cave de La Côte
 Diwisa Distillerie
 Domaine Chatelanat
 Domaine E. de Montmollin Fils
 Domaine Vin du Diable
 Jean-René Germanier
 La Baudelière
 Les Frères Dubois
 Provins Valais
 René Favre & Fils
 Rouvinez Vins
 St. Jodern Kellerei

Valais Valais
Neuchatel Valais Valais Valais Valais Valais

Switzerland is best known for its chocolate, watches, banks, machine industry and tourism, but this little country also produces great wines. Vineyards were introduced by the Romans some 2,000 years ago as they conquered Europe. The wide range of flavors and styles reflects the incredible variety found in exposure, soil composition and the micro-climates of Switzerland's numerous vineyards. Getting to know Swiss wines means discovering these subtle differences in terroir and taste.

Approximately 75% of the production occurs in the vineyards of western Switzerland, along Lake Geneva (Lac Lman in French) and south and south east of the lake along the Rhne valley. Other vineyards are found around Lake Neuchtel in the west, in Ticino, south of the Alps, and in northern, northeastern and eastern Switzerland, mainly in the Rhine valley. Total vineyard surface is approximately 37,000 acres with a production of over 34 million gallons, of which roughly 48% are whites and 52% reds. The country is home to hundreds if not thousands of wineries, and many more vineyard-owning families who pass their land from generation to generation.

Very few foreigners know about Swiss wines, the reason being that although Switzerland has been producing wines since the Roman era, its production covers only roughly 30% of the domestic consumption, therefore there is very little incentive to export. In fact, only 1-2% of its wine production is exported yearly, and the bulk of it to the European Union. If you are unfamiliar with Switzerland, it is located in the center of western Europe, and the map above will help you familiarize yourself with its main vine growing regions.

The cultural diversity of Switzerland with its four linguistic regions (65% German in the East, 25% French in the West, 6.5% Italian in the South and 0.5% Rheto-Romansh in the South East) adds to its wine diversity, despite its very small size. At 41,285 km2 (15,940 sq mi), it is 4 times smaller than Wisconsin, Swiss Cellars’ home state, and with a population of 7.5mio has 33% more residents than Wisconsin does. To give a sense of distances, it takes approx 3.5 hours to cross Switzerland from West to East, as well as from North to South on its interstate system. And it takes about 2-2.5 hours to drive through its wine country from Geneva south into the Valais.

The dominating varietals include Chasselas (white), Pinot Noir, Gamay and Merlot. Switzerland is home to some unique varietals, such as the Chasselas, the most important white and cultivated in western Switzerland. Other specialties include the Petite Arvine, Amigne and Malvoisie (whites), Gamaret, Garanoir, Cornalin, Humagne Rouge and Mondeuse (reds).

The appellation system varies by region. All regions have a main appellation that is identical to the name of the canton (Valais, Ticino, Neuchatel, Vaud, etc). Then Geneva and Vaud have adopted a Burgundy-like AOC system.

The weather in Switzerland is generally moderate in the Swiss Plateau (the East-West stretch of land relatively flat between the Jura mountains in the North and the Alps in the South). On the Plateau, freezing temperatures generally occur during December-early March with an average temperature of 9 C (48 F) for elevations between 500–600 metres (1,600–2,000 ft). On the Plateau, the average precipitation is 1,000 millimeters (39.4 in). The higher elevations of the Jura and the Alps naturally cause lower temperatures and in the high Alps glaciers exist. The Jura and foothills (both north and south of the Alps) typically have more precipitation, with an average of 1,200–1,600 millimetres (47–63 in), while the high Alps may have over 2,500 millimetres (98 in). Ticino, on the south side of the Alps, has sub-tropical vegetation and is usually 2-4C (4-7 F) warmer and wetter than the Swiss Plateau. In the Kppen climate classification, the Swiss Plateau is classed as Maritime Temperate or Oceanic climate (Cfb) and the Alps are considered Tundra climates or (ET). A maritime temperate area will have changeable, often overcast weather. Summers are cool due to cloud cover and winters are milder than expected due to latitude. The Jura will be slightly cooler due to higher altitude. Within the Alps, temperatures and snow fall correlate to altitude. (source: wikipedia.org). The country’s coordinates are 47 N 8 E.