Pinot Grigio - or Pinot Gris, as it is known in France - has become a firm favorite.
Pinot Grigio - or Pinot Gris, as it is known in France - has become a firm favorite. Its ability to produce well-balanced, clean flavours of white fruit and honey as well as refreshing acidity means that it finds a place on most good wine lists.
Thought to be a mutant relative of the popular Pinot Noir grape, the dusty blue-grey fruit are often harvested early in the season to preserve the freshness and acidity that create such dangerously-drinkable whites.
Picking the perfect moment to harvest is, however, a delicate balancing act that many New World wine-producers struggle with; the result can often be sickly and unappetising.
It is most widely grown in the Alsace region of France, where it produces deeply-fruity wines with a delicious spice and buttery finish, as well as in northern Italy, where the wines tend to be less full-bodied and intense. Many very drinkable examples also come out of Australia and New Zealand - and even some of America’s northern states.
This versatile grape is a variety that, when twinned with fine seafood or white fish, really comes into its own.
The acidity of the northern Italian whites - especially those from the Friuli-Veneto regions - bring out the taste of prawns, squid and white meat.
Pinot Grigio, 2011