Pinot Grigio – Yes, But which one?
Pinot Grigio is one of the most widely grown varieties of grapes grown in Italy. Spanning northern Italy from East to West the number of Pinot Grigios available results in a hundreds of different types of wine with a wide range of taste, bouquet and acidity. There are many factors that define the characteristics of a wine. The minerals and richness of the soil where they are grown, the climate, and the number of days and intensity of the sun define the sugar content, the acidity and the underlying flavors found in a wine.
This grape is a relative of Pinot Nero. It may seem unusual that Pinot Grigio would be a white wine. In reality Pinot Grigio can also be copper colored but usually is produced as a white wine. The coloration depends on the amount of the skin coloring pigments used when manufacturing the wine.
Pinot Grigio will usually be crisp and dry. Usually, a Pinot Grigio will present subtle uniform flavors that range from watermelon to Apricots. The tastes should be identified immediately without an aftertaste. I have found that the more industrial production versions of Pinot Grigio have either a strange slightly bitter aftertaste or a lingering sweetness. Generally, once the more publicized names have been eliminated, any Pinot Grigio is my preferred choice as a before dinner drink, maybe with bruschetta, or to accompany delicate fish or boiled meats.
The widespread production and the thousands of producers keep the price of Pinot Grigio at a very reasonable price. The range is from about 7$ to 24$. I have also found that a higher price does not mean a better Pinot Grigio. You can find a marvelous wine at a very reasonable price. My favorite Pinot Grigio at the low end of price is MezzaCorona while my favorite at the higher price range is Livio Felluga.
Pinot Grigio should be served very cold, 8-10 degrees c., and in small amounts to maintain the proper temperature. An ice bucket is always a good solution when this wine is served with dinner.
To sum it up, Pinot Grigio is always a good choice. Try different producers, most likely you will find a geographic area of preference, I like wines from Friuli, Collio and Alto Adige. Generally most of the wines from the same areas will be similar in taste. Finally avoid the names with huge advertising campaigns.
Tags: Pinot Grigio Friuli Alto+Adige Mezzacorona Livio Felluga Food and Wine Travel Italy