It is not about applying a technique to better control life and produce
better wines : it is all about being inspired by and having faith in the dynamics of this living thing, to learn to truly live !
This calls for a collaboration between thoughtful attention paid by people and what nature offers. It takes us back to observing and understanding nature’s ability to be an enchantress of such great diversity. This is not a simple laisser-faire approach – a living wine is not an untamed one. This is about the civilized wine, the wine of emotion. Forget all the fussiness and snobbery.
Féchy is a tiny village in Switzerland, situated in the hills of the Côte Vaudoise that slope gently down towards Lake Geneva. The tradition of winegrowing is a thousand years old here, and wine remains integral to our celebration of life. It is a part of who we are – drinking a glass of wine with others is often a first step, a gesture of welcome, offered in a spirit of simplicity and conviviality.
Jules Paccot, the son of a French seasonal worker from Savoy, bought vineyards in Féchy but it was his son Roger who created the winery he called La Colombe and established its reputation. A winegrower by choice, and a passionately committed enologist, Raymond, Roger’s eldest son, took up the reins in 1978.
The Paccots chose this country because they loved it and felt close to its soil, working hard and fervently to bring out the best in it. Today the 4th generation, Laura, is immersed in the activities of the winery, preparing to carry on this work.
In 1955 a priest showed up at the cellar. He asked for Jules Paccot, who came out – and the priest cried out, “ hello cousin ! ”. Lost for centuries La Colombe’s coat of arms came to light again, when it was found by Abbott Emile Paccot. A symbol of peace, the coat of arms was granted to the Paccot family by Count Vert Amédée (Amédée VI) of Savoy in 1356, as thanks for diplomatic efforts during a regional war. Roger Paccot decided to use this family heritage for the first La Colombe label in 1961.
our approach from the vine to wine
The biodynamic approach, brought in progressively since 1999, is now used throughout the vineyards.
Soil maintenance is carried out mechanically, with no use of chemical herbicides in order to preserve the soil’s microbial life. We compost our own marc, mixing it with manure, for a year, before resetting it to our vines. We are intensifying our efforts on pruning methods and sprouting to keep our vines healthy and so helping them to age longer.
We no longer use insecticides, thus allowing the return of natural predators. Products used to protect the vineyard are limited to Bordeaux mixture, sulphur, biodynamic preparations and infusions made from plants like nettles, horsetail and yarrow.
We rigorously quality-sort our grapes while they are still on the vine. They are harvested manually and placed in small open containers until they reach the press.
They are then pressed slowly with a pneumatic press. Static clarification is followed by natural fermentation using the yeasts that are found on our grapes. At the end of the maturing process we add, according to the life of each wine, but not systematically, a reasoned dose of sulphur to protect the wine during the bottling process. This approach that respects the soil, plant and people allows the character of our wines and terroirs their best expression. There is, in the end, no one part of the process that matters most : this is a complex series of actions and well-reflected choices.