Garanoir - Biodynamic Wines
Biodynamic wines are organic wines made following the lunar calendar and the naturalistic beliefs of Rudolf Steiner.
It is a holistic concept - looking at the whole ecosystem through cycles and energy. The goal is to enhance the natural life-flow cycles of the vine and especially its immune system. Memorable processes in biodynamic vinetending include using cow horns to hold the silica which will be buried in the soil and applying specific herbal sprays on precise days.
There is a dose of non scientific magical thinking in biodynamic processes. But as one of my winemakers put it "it doesn't make sense and I feel silly doing some of it, but my vines look healthier"
Garanoir is a new hybrid grape, a cross between Gamay and Reichensteiner, a white variety found in Germany (and in the UK). It produces immensely powerful dark red wines, with much tannin and is increasingly used in "big" blends.
Garanoir has very smooth tannins, low acidity, has a deep colour, generous fruit perfectly enhanced by a touch of spice, and an incredible complex texture. It is used in blends to bring texture and a certain complex richness to the wine. The variety is often blended with its sibling, Gamaret. Aromatically speaking, Garanoir wines can be strikingly similar to those made from Pinot Noir. Garanoir lacks Pinot Noir's acidity however, so it is best grown in cooler vineyard sites. In cooler conditions, the grapes can ripen slowly and steadily without losing too much acidity.
Garanoir was born in 1970 at the Caudoz research centre in Pully near Lausanne in Switzerland and originally named Pully B-28. It then underwent a few name changes before Garanoir was chosen. It was released in 1990.
Garanoir was developed for cultivation in German Switzerland and is a full sibling of Gamaret, which was intended for the French part of the country. They are fantastic as a blend.