Friday 27 October 2023

Sauvignon Gris = Fié Gris


We drank a wine made from Sauvignon Gris last night. It tasted very much like Sauvignon Blanc. Nice enough.

Further research showed that Sauvignon Gris is a synonym for Fié Gris which has already appeared in these pages.

Tuesday 10 October 2023

Our GF 93-22.6 also has a name now!


Encouraged by the discovery of a name for our Gm 1807-3 after so many years, and what a name: 'Fidelio' (see previous post), we checked on our other variety  GF 93-22.6 yet to be so dignified.

It seems that the wine establishments in Germany have been hard at work because mirabile dictu, there is now a name for GF 93-22.6 too:

Calardis Blanc.

OK, something catchier such as La Traviata, La Sonnambula or Luisa Miller might have stuck in mind a little easier but Calardis Blanc is a name at least.

The following comes from a grape nursery called Sibbus:

Calardis blanc - resistant variety
Calardis blanc bunch
This is a white fungus-resistant cross of the german Julius Kühn Institute at the Geilweilerhof in Siebeldingen in the Palatinate from 1993.

Cross: Calardis Musqué x Seyve Villard 39-639.

The name is derived from "Calardiswilre", as the Geilweilerhof was historically called.

Gf.1993-22-6 (breeders name)

Requirements to the site:
Calardis blanc is a fungus-resistant white wine variety with high yield potential. Therefore, the site should not be chosen too weak. It does not tend to high alcohol content.

Calardis blanc was only approved in Germany in 2020, and is therefore still very young and not widely spread.

Special characteristics:
The resistance to Peronospora (downy mildew) is very high, but also the resistance to Oidium (powdery mildew) is high. Due to the very loose grape structure, there are almost no Botrytis infestation. Calardis blanc also has good resistance to black rot.

The straight growth and the relatively low stinginess also make it very interesting from a viticultural point of view. This also includes the low sensitivity to sunburn.

It has been registered in the German variety list since 2020. This means that it may be planted in Germany.

The mostly slightly fruity wines lie somewhere between Burgundy and Riesling.


Meanwhile, a reminder from our post of March 22nd 2015 of how we came to buy GF 93-22.6/Calardis Blanc in the first place: 

So bidding Geilweilerhof Auf Wiedersehen, we trundled off to Umstein which is positively heaving with Rebschule, one actually called Krapp.

But here was Wolfs Brunnen, Winzer. Weinprobe, Verkauf (Wolf's Spring, Producer, Wine-tasting, Sales)

Frau Wolf, left and colleague preparing vines for planting

Entering with some trepidation we were asked by Frau Wolf what our visit was about and when we mentioned vines she asked which ones we wanted. We asked her which ones she had. That is a question which has caused consternation before at other Rebschule. Stocktaking at the end of a no doubt busy season must be well nigh impossible. We were actually after Souvignier Gris. Frau Wolf conducted us into the presence of her husband in an inner sanctum. Herr Wolf turned out to be a very jovial character delighted to help.

He decided that what we wanted was GF.93-22-6, a crossing of GF.GA-47-42 (Bacchus x Seyval) x Seyve Villard 39-639.

It became clear we were not going to leave without 25 Stueck of this variety. Even the obligatory agreement with Geilweilerhof could be sent for our signature. Meanwhile a bundle of vines in a brown plastic bag was loaded onto us.

We didn't object as we had taken a shine to the Wolfs and reckoned they knew what they were talking about. We also have a faiblesse for varieties so obscure they don't have a name yet. We might put  GF.93-22-6 next to our GM8107-3.

Herr Wolf then conducted us to the tasting room where he urged a sample of something called Aromera on us.  It came from a colleague; a Rebschule in Austria.

the Wolf's gemuetlich tasting room

He also urged us to return in July when up to 1,000 people descend on his property to taste up to 36 wines he makes in micro-vinification so buyers of his vines may know what to expect.

Later we learned that Freiburg had located 25 1 metre long vines of Souvignier Gris for us. How kind everyone is in the world of Rebschule and wine research institutes.



We spotted it in 2011: Gm 8107 - 3 no longer: now FIDELIO!!!


Back in 2011 we went to the famous grape research institute and university at Geisenheim and came away having spotted a promising variety with no name referred only as Gm 8107-3. 


Here is Slotovino on that discovery made during a tasting of many of the new varieties obtained at Geisenheim. The tasting was by courtesy of Dipl. Ing. Bettina Lindner.

Gm 8107-3

a deliciously apply (Bettina preferred citrussy) wine from grapes descended from Ehrenbreitsteiner and FR 52-64 (meaning a grape cultivated by the Freiburg Institute in 1952). Ehrenbreitsteiner is itself a crossing of two generations of other crossings. As in any other kind of breeding the hope is that progress may be made over time. Bettina Lindner told us she had sold the GM 8107-3 to a French gentleman looking for varieties to plant in Brasil or some such humid part of the world and this person had decided the variety should have a proper name and chose 'Bettina'. We were pleased to follow his lead, so 'Bettina' it is.

We bought 25 bare rooted vines and planted them that year so the vines are now 12 years old. They have always been quite vigorous but the grapes have never ripened fully until this year. Suddenly we have huge bunches of beautiful large grapes undisturbed by birds or wasps. No sign of the rather strident taste when these grapes have not ripened properly. 

All these years we have had confidence in Gm 8107-3. Derek Pritchard of Dunkery Vineyard in Devon sells it through his estimable site. Every so often we have googled old 8107 to see if it has finally been given a name.

Just today we discover that it has indeed been given that honour and what is more, the name is 'Fidelio' also the name of Beethoven's operatic masterpiece. How appropriate! So nostalgically no more Bettina, welcome Fidelio.

We aim to make a wine this year with the grape 'Fidelio' the old boy would have drunk with pleasure.

Julius Kühn-Institut LogoVIVC logo




Passport data

Prime name
Color of berry skin
Variety number VIVC
Country or region of origin of the variety
Pedigree as given by breeder/bibliography
Pedigree confirmed by markers

Full pedigree
Prime name of parent 1
Prime name of parent 2
Parent - offspring relationship


Breeder institute code
Breeder contact address
Hochschule Geisenheim University
Institut für Rebenzüchtung
Year of crossing
Year of selection

Year of protection
Formation of seeds
Sex of flowers


Photos of the cultivar

SSR-marker data

Loci for resistance

Degree of resistance

Loci of traits

Table of accession names
Table of area

Registered in the European Catalogue

Synonyms: 2
GEISENHEIM 8107-3GM 8107-3
Holding institutions (institute codes): 1

Sunday 23 July 2023

Alsace new varieties?


Appearing in 'Vitisphere' newsletter this morning:

Alsace wants to test 16 new grape varieties: chenin, malbec, syrah, vermentino...

The general meeting of the Association of Winegrowers of Alsace (Ava) on July 20 in Colmar gave the green light to the acquisition of technical references with grape varieties capable of helping the vineyard to adapt to climate change and to limit treatments.
By Christophe Reibel On July 23, 2023 in 'Vitisphere'
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Alsace wants to test 16 new grape varieties: chenin, malbec, syrah, vermentino...
Yvan Engel and Christian Kohser. "With the VIFA procedure and the Alsavine program, the Alsatian vineyard intends to acquire resistant grape varieties that are better adapted to climate change". - photo credit: Christophe Rebeil


As of this autumn, Alsace will initiate the VIFA procedure (varieties of interest for adaptation purposes) with the National Institute of Origin and Quality (Inao). The Association of Winegrowers of Alsace (Ava) created its VIFA commission at the end of 2022. This selected ten white grape varieties (chenin, floréal, johanniter, petit manseng, opalor, petit courbu, selenor, souvignier gris, vermentino and voltis) and six reds (calabrese/nero d'avola, colliris, malbec/côt, nebbiolo, sirano and syrah) in selecting them on their resistance to diseases, their time of maturity, their ease of management, the acid structure of the wines (but not according to the emblematic appearance of certain varieties in wine-growing areas, which could have consequences: see box).

For grape varieties resistant to mildew and powdery mildew, “many winegrowers are struggling to manage rows of vines close to homes. In these situations, they quickly need the solution for experimenting with resistant grape varieties that will allow them to respect the Non-Treatment Zones (ZNT) and produce without losing the appellation” explains Christian Kohser, in charge of the VIFA file at Ava . “This response comes in support of the Alsavine program which aims to select new varieties with polygenic resistances to Riesling and Gewurztraminer typicity. We can also re-study the behavior of clones deemed too acidic and/or too late in the past.” adds Yvan Engel, president of the Ava technical commission. The acquisition of references in the different types of soil is planned over a period of ten years. In the room, Pierre Gassmann, independent winegrower in Rorschwihr, regretted that the old Alsatian grape varieties like the knipperlé were not considered worthy of being part of the varieties selected. “We had to act quickly” explained Christian Kohser…

The vintage still has great potential

The meeting also approved the filing of a dossier for an innovation evaluation device (DEI) concerning the management of weeds on the cavaillon using permeable biodegradable mulch. A ten-year follow-up is planned. The profession is finally working on the constitution, probably in 2024, of a network of plots whose water profile will be monitored over ten years in order to specify the methods of (possible) irrigation of the vines.

Water, precisely, remains a crucial element to realize the great potential of the 2023 vintage on the 15,529 hectares of the Alsatian vineyard. The forecast relates to 991,00 hl against 849,00 hl actually produced in 2022. But to reach this level, it would still take a good thirty millimeters in August, according to several winegrowers present in Colmar. As for the yields authorized in the Alsace appellation, the vineyard generally remains on values between 55 (gewurztraminer), 65, 70 and 75 hl/ha depending on the grape variety. The crémant grapes increase to 80 hl/ha. These different levels are matched with a VCI of 10 hl/ha. The CRINAO meeting on August 22 will decide on the opening dates for the harvest.

Note: Inao (Institut National de l'Origine et de la Qualite) is the French institute which controls the delineation of appellations and what may be planted in them. It is also active since 1970 for the development of new and resistant varieties, active since 1970. These include Floreal and Voltis (white) and Artaban and Vidoc (red). They also produce recommended clones of many 'classic' varieties.

Wednesday 5 July 2023

Mas del Périé vieux cepages conservatoires.


At the Fabien Jouve place, Mas del Périé (Cahors) they say Malbec is king but they also have famously Jurancon Noir ('You fuck my wine') and mention the following in their literature;

Cahours, Negral, Baral, Pissaire, Magdeleine Noir, Merille, Grand Noir de la Calmette, Gibert, Malpe, Valdiguié, Noual

These are planted in 'plusiers parcelles de vieux cepages conservatoires'... only Gibert, Valdiguié, Noual have been used in their wines so far but we live in hope.

Tuesday 3 January 2023

New INRA/JKI varieties susceptible to drought.


The new grape varieties Floreal, Voltis Vidoc and Artaban have been obtained by crossing something called Muscadina Rotundifolia with Villaris in the case of the first two to produce white grapes and with Regent to produce the latter two. the Julius Kuehn Institute gets mentioned because Regent is one of their grape varieties.

Now it seems these new varieties have hit the buffers as far as global warming is concerned. 50 days without water is enough to kill Floréal. You would need 150 for Pinot Noir, Merlot, or Cabernet Sauvignon.

Floréal is the most sensitive, followed by Vidoc and Voltis. Artaban comes off better » Sylvain Delzon maintained in the most recent lecture at 'Vendanges du Savoir' at the Cité du vin de Bordeaux on December 8th last.

Also, the vine is the only species that can store moisture in the wood if we have understood the following properly:

'la vigne est de plus en plus résistante à l’embolie au fur et à mesure de l’avancée de la saison du fait de la lignification de ses vaisseaux. « Un phénomène jamais observé sur d’autres espèces ».' (Delzon).

(the vine is increasingly resistant to embolism (gas bubble preventing hydration) as the season progresses due to the lignification of its vessels. “A phenomenon never observed on other species”).


'Lignification is the technical name for a stem becoming woody—brown, dry, and hard as opposed to green, sappy, and pliable.'

Fred Swan, GuildSom 28.6.17

Fred adds 

'Despite thousands of years of winemaking history, we’re still refining our understanding of the myriad factors leading any given wine to taste and feel as it does. Arguably, no other consumer product has such variety or involves so many minute, often inscrutable, factors. A wine’s personality is influenced by geology, microbiology, chemistry, plant and human physiology, agronomy, entomology, geography, weather, and more.'

Something to think about on cold winter evenings when you sip your vino da meditazione.....