Domaine des Abeilles d'Or - Marie-Therese Chappaz - Varone
Marie-Therese Chappaz' fantastic wines
Originally from the small hamlet of "Les Baillets" in the heart of the Geneva wine-growing district, the Desbaillets family is mentioned in local archives going back over 500 years. Domaine des Abeilles d'Or has developed a fine reputation. When we started to work with them it was run by René Desbaillets and now his son has taken over. How time flies!
The estate has some 34 hectares of vines in the village of Chouilly which is in the Satigny district which today is the largest wine-growing district in Switzerland. Vines grow here at an altitude of between 450 and 500 metres on clay loam soils over porous sandstone bedrock. René, ably assisted by his winemaker son Laurent (recent graduate of the winemaking school at Changins) makes a wide range of red, rosé, white and sparkling wines. Of particular note is the estate's Douce Noire, an oaked red blend of international and Swiss varieties which regularly sweeps the board in competitions.
A heraldic note - on the family crest the blue represents the sky, justice and beauty while the golden bees symbolise wealth and nobility. The striped band represents virtue, ardour, love and courage. Nothing could better describe the wonderful landscape of hills around Chouilly and the great wines and character of the producer!
I'm very impressed with your service and will certainly be ordering more wine in the future. Having made several visits to Austria in the last few years, I've acquired a taste for their wine which, apart from Grüner Veltliner, is hard to find here. I was really pleased when my sister passed on your details. Although I'm only just tasting my second bottle, the quality is excellent-makes me almost imagine I am back in my beloved Tyrol!
It was the first time I have ordered from Alpine Wines and I just wanted to say that I found the unexpected follow-up call a very nice touch. I am also pleased to report that it was the winning wine for our Austrian evening at our very informal wine club!
As a half-Swiss I know what distinctive, quality wines Switzerland can produce. Until now, the problem has been locating them in the UK, since the demise of the Swiss Centre in Leicester Square many years ago. Keep them coming!
PS: I would like to see, and taste a pinot noir or two from the Germanic region - very distinctive from Burgundy, but more importantly from the lighter, thinner Germanic pinot.