Pinot Gris

February 28, 2022 by
Maytte Rivera

Pinot Gris, also known as Pinot Grigio, has consolidated itself as one of the most beloved and consumed white grapes of the world.  Originally from Burgundy, it surfaced when the red grape Pinot Noir began losing anthocyanins (the pigment responsible for the grape’s red color) in some of the vineyards, creating a grape with a pale pink-gray color, hence the name “Pinot Gris”.  From Burgundy it traveled to Champagne, where it is known as Fromentau, and after that it has taken the wine world by storm.

Pinot Gris adapts very well to different climates to produce dry, light to medium body wines with high acidity and aromas that range from lemon zest and wet gravel to ripe stone fruits and melon. In Italy, where it is known as Pinot Gris, it benefits from high altitude and colder weather to produce high acid wines with delicate flavors of Meyer lemon and minerality.  In Alsace, France, where it is one of the main white grapes used for production, it acquires profound aromas of honey and gingerbread.  In United States, Oregon has had tremendous success with this grape.  The sunny days of the Willamette Valley allow Pinot Gris to develop riper flavors of nectarine and cantaloupe.

Pinot Gris is definitely a very versatile grape that can produce white and rose wines with a wide range of aromas and flavors.  Pair the Italian version with lighter cheeses like fresh Mozzarella or Asiago or try the New World styles with light summer salads.

Author: Maytte Rivera

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