Gamay was originally grown in France’s Touraine region, in parts of the Loire valley and, most famously, in Beaujolais. However, the soils of the Geneva countryside now also yield a particularly fruity Gamay. Some Geneva vineyards, such as those around Peney and Peissy, produce a Gamay that can be vinified to keep for five years or longer. Like all the other reds from the Domaine des Balisiers, our varietal Gamay is matured for a year at the winery before it goes on the market. Gamay is the leading red varietal produced by Geneva winemakers. It is primarily a mealtime wine to accompany cold-cuts, white meats and poultry. Unlike most reds, it can be served slightly chilled. It is a ruby-coloured wine with a distinctive fruitiness, typically featuring notes of raspberry and blackberry.
Aligoté is one of the traditional white varieties of Burgundy. It thrives in deep soils with a little limestone and has accordingly developed into a local specialty of the Geneva vineyards. The vine is easy to identify from its luxuriant foliage and reddish shoots. Fruity and full of character, our Aligoté features faint notes of spiciness and lime. It goes particularly well with all seafood dishes and fish, also making a good aperitif in the Winter months. It is a dry wine, a specialty that needs to be well chilled before serving. One wine critic praised its “aromas of ripe fruit underscored by a melliferous note” (24h). To quote another: “in the deep soils of the left bank of the Rhône, on the hillsides of Lully and Perly, this variety matures exceptionally well. This white has a wonderful freshness with just the right touch of acidity” (Basler Zeitung, Wine of the Week).
Having identified the outstanding potential of a 0.7 hectare vineyard planted with Pinot Noir in Peissy, we undertook to enhance the quality of its produce further by limiting its yield (8-10 bunches of grapes per vine), delaying the harvest, and vinifying it separately. Ilôt Noir spends three weeks in fermentation tanks in order to maximize its concentration by enhancing its tannins, substance and colouring. It is then matured for a year in large oaken barrels (“foudres”) for micro-oxygenation and aromatic subtlety, and subjected to minimal filtration. With its garnet-red colour, this Pinot Noir varietal features a nose of remarkable freshness, fragrant with raspberry. On tasting, its flavours strike a harmonious balance between subtlety and the smoothness of silky tannins. It holds the promise of great potential for ageing.