THE COOPERATIVE, A MODEL FOR THE FUTURE
People are at the heart of la Cave de la Côte’s economic model, which has been built and revolves around its 300 members and winegrowers, who are the cooperative’s real owners and influence its activities. The cooperative format now has the wind in its sails – it is committed to and supports local production and the concept of proximity beloved of consumers. The cooperative undertakes to process all its members’ harvests. Its purchases directly benefit the winegrower, eliminating middle men, and the profits are ploughed back into the cellar for the benefit of the producers themselves.
At the other end of the chain, la Cave de la Côte sells directly to individuals from its two shops in Nyon and Tolochenaz. Where consumers are concerned, it is able to rely on a dense network of small, medium and large retailers and special relationships with the region’s restaurateurs.
Cave de la Côte vinifies wines at two recently renovated sites in Nyon and Tolochenaz. Finesse, precision and flexibility are more than ever the order of the day, thanks to modernised installations that have made it possible to be more precise in terms of temperature control. The craftsman behind la Cave de la Côte’s formidable resurgence, Rodrigo Banto, is an oenologist and agronomic engineer. Having trained at Chile’s two biggest estates, San Pedro and Caliterra, as well as in Bordeaux and California, he is fascinated by the craft‘s creative aspects, by mastery of the weather and the almost mystical dimension to wine.
With his team of two oenologists and seven cellarmasters, Rodrigo Banto has been helping to change the region’s image since 2003, which has brought about its shift in quality – a tremendous potential that has finally been recognised.
Among the most spectacular laurels received by La Cave de la Côte’s oenologist are the awards for the world’s best Merlot in 2010, the world’s best Chasselas in 2015 and the best rosé, thanks to the Cave’s Merlot-based rosé, not to mention the 15 medals won at various competitions in 2017 alone.
Rodrigo Banto’s creativity, his daring, and his team’s expertise have been expressed in other ways, with a first organic wine that does not contain any sulphites, and a surprising Gallotta 2015, with a bouquet of raspberries and red fruit that finally reveals the potential of this grape variety, usually reserved for blends. Another original creation is his “G’amarone”, a Gamaret vinified in the style of an Amarone, a sun-drenched wine, with a bouquet of black fruit, prunes and tobacco. His talent has helped la Cave to make the Gault and Millau list of the 100 best winegrowers in Switzerland and Vinum magazine’s list of the best vineyards.