Wine Talk

Snooth User: Mike Madaio

Is Pinot Grigio Underrated?

Posted by Mike Madaio, Jun 25, 2016.

I explored this topic for a recent piece, finding some interesting results. Your thoughts?

http://undiscovereditaly.us/pinot-g...

Replies

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Reply by outthere, Jun 25, 2016.

Not if you ask me. Personally I'll grab bottled water as it does the same thing for a lot less. I've always seen PG as an entry level variety for people who don't have a palate for real wine. YMMV.

Give it some skin contact and it becomes interesting, but the bland white versions do absolutely nothing for me.

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Reply by dmcker, Jun 25, 2016.

Haven't read Mike's blogpiece yet, but am with you OT, and my response to the OP's question in the header is 'as a rule, no'. On top of those issues you mention I also often encounter damaged bottles so you take a lesser, weaker generic wine to start with and drop it even closer to zero.

Good pinot gris or grigio does, however, exist. Good ones in Alsace, and further north towards the Alps in Italy, so it seems to need cooler climes. The mass-produced plonk you see in too many places starting with the Veneto is truly yawnworthy.

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Reply by JonDerry, Jun 25, 2016.

Bella Serra Pinot Grigio, great cooking wine!

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Reply by Mike Madaio, Jun 25, 2016.

If your starting point is Bella Sera, or Cavit, or Bolla, in fairness you'd have to compare these to Woodbridge or Barefoot other varietals (i.e. they all suck).

If you seek premium high quality in other wines, then it's only fair to do the same w/ PG...

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Reply by outthere, Jun 25, 2016.

Tell that to the importers! We can only drink what they offer us.

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Reply by JonDerry, Jun 25, 2016.

Speaking to OT's point, of course the Radikon is really nice with skin contact. Any other producers in that upper echelon Mike?

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Reply by vin0vin0, Jun 25, 2016.

Have to say that the majority of the PG we had in Alsace was really good, unfortunately, I haven't found any of those here in the States. Checking my tasting notes we have had some fairly decent Gris from Willamette and since we'll be there for the week of the 4th, we can do some more in depth analysis. I have also had a Balletto and an Arista from Russian River that didn't suck.

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Reply by dmcker, Jun 25, 2016.

The Alto Adige is where I was talking about having had good pinot grigio further north, up towards the Dolomites and the Tyrol. In some ways similar to Savoie in France where you get all those alpine flowery notes and minerality and other points of interest in relatively unknown whites.

Mike, you mention

Zemmer,

Castelfeder, and

Donna Alma

from the Alto Adige. I've had the Zemmer and Castelfeder, both good and I've really enjoyed the Zemmers on several occasions, but haven't had the Donna Alma. Any others you care to share?

First time I had a ramato, in Venice, I didn't think anything about it at first other than that it seemed like a nice rosato/rosado/rose of a different style and grape. Then the penny dropped and I realized it was a rosato made from a supposedly white grape, or at least one that usually produced white wines. I'd just spent a lot of time before that in Switzerland, near Neuchatel then down in the Valais, and I'd been drinking a lot of Oeil de Perdrix, which is a pale rose made from free-run (Swiss) pinot noir juice. Color was similar, though flavor was different. Don't think I've had a rose made from pinot gris in Alsace, though I don't know why I haven't hunted one down before.

Here's a bottle of oeil de perdrix:

And here's a bottle of ramato where you can see the more burnished tinge, though there are definitely ramatos that are pinker than this (and even this one would be without the gray background).

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Reply by rckr1951, Jun 25, 2016.

If I'm going to drink PG it's from Northern Italy also. I don't drink many either.  Although there have times when Yalumba makes a decent PG.

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Reply by Mike Madaio, Jun 27, 2016.

In the Alto Adige the ones I mentioned are those that I've tried recently, but other reliable producers up there include Terlan(o), Andrian(o), Elena Walch, Abbacia di Novacella, Tramin and St. Paul's.

For ramato, Attems is probably the most widely available, although as you can see from the article I preferred their non-ramato PG. Neither Di Lenardo nor Pullus (the latter from Slovakia) should be all that hard to track down.


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