Pinot Grigio

Review: 2012 Gaetano d’Aquino Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie

This Italian Pinot Grigio is dry with a tangy aftertaste. An apple flavor dominates here. Did I like it? Well, better said perhaps that I didn’t hate it. It was OK.

The 2012 Gaetano D’Aquino Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie is a very cheap Pinot Grigio from Trader Joe’s, so that’s a plus. It’s a fruity, non-demanding easy drinker.

 

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Nuts & Bolts:

  • Winery: Gaetano D’Aquino 
  • Type: Pinot Grigio
  • Origin: Italy
  • Vintage: 2012
  • Price: $3.99
  • Alcohol content: 12%
  • When to drink: Don’t think I’d buy this again, so I can’t recommend a situation when to drink it.

Review: Craftwork 2012 Pinot Grigio

It smelled like honeydew when I stuck my nose into my first glass of Craftwork’s 2012 Pinot Grigio, but when I drank it, I forgot about that alluring scent. I expected a fruity concoction, but was distracted by the alcohol burn. The bottle says it’s 13.5%, but it tasted like more. I feel like this wine, because of the bite, would do well in a white sangria.

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I’m usually a fan of Pinot Grigio, but I don’t think I’d pick this one up again. It’s not a bad, but it wasn’t for me. Unfortunately, I picked up two bottles at the most recent Bevmo 5 cent wine sale. I was hunting for Pinot Grigio and this one had 91 points, so I snagged it. Lesson learned: points can be deceiving.

Have you ever disliked a highly rated wine? Tell me about it.

Nuts and Bolts

  • Winery: Craftwork
  • Type: Pinot Grigio
  • Origin: Monterey
  • Vintage: 2012
  • Price: $15.95, but I got one for 5 cents
  • Alcohol content: 13.5%
  • When to drink: If you’re making a white sangria, I think this wine would go well with a few shots of clear liquors in your cabinet, peaches, raspberries and a splash of bubbly.

Pinot Grigio vs. Pinot Gris

I had never heard of Pinot Gris until I visited this girl in Eugene:

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I’m on the left, Ann’s on the right.

That’s Ann on the right, a great friend and Eugene wine ambassador. You see, when Ann was living in Eugene both times I visited she showed me amazing wineries. I had no idea there were even wineries in Eugene!

I also didn’t know about Pinot Gris until my most recent trip. But one sip of a glass of Pinot Gris from Silvan Ridge, and I was hooked. In fact, Oregon’s known for Pinot Gris.

I’ve even spread the gospel of Pinot Gris to friend’s this summer during visits to the Hollywood Bowl. I could never bring enough bottles of the varietal. It went quick!

OK, technically the two are the same grape variety. Now here come the stereotypes about taste:

  • Pinot Grigio tends to be lighter-bodied; Pinot Gris more full-bodied
  • Pinot Grigio tends to be fruitier–think pear and melon; some Pinot Gris have a spice kick

Now, I remember the Pinot Gris I had at Silvan Ridge being pretty soft. It was fruity, but not too fruity, and just felt like silk on the tongue. Full disclosure: it’s not a full Pinot Gris. It was 3% Viognier (the ones I’ve had have always been sweet and flowery), but that’s so little, whose counting?

Give me a glass of Pinot Gris (leave the bottle) and a cheese plate, maybe Manchengo and goat cheese, and I’m a happy camper.

Review: Main & Geary Pinot Grigio

The first time I had Pinot Grigio I was way under the legal drinking age in the United States, but I wasn’t in the United States! I was in Florence, Italy during a summer abroad “studying” art history after my junior year in high school. It was the first summer that I wouldn’t be going to camp playing Color War and swinging on the ropes course. Instead, I was going somewhere fancy, sophisticated; it made all my friends jealous.

On one of the first nights there, a few of us from the trip decided to see if we could order alcohol. I honestly think none of us had before, but this one very artsy, very Karen O girl seemed to know what she was doing. She ordered a bottle of cheap Pinot Grigio.

We were a couple of 16-year-olds in Florence, ordering wine on our own! The city smelled old, not musty, but old like a favorite well-read book. I remember the Pinot Grigio being sweeeet and honestly not liking it very much. I didn’t pick up another glass of the stuff for years.

Over time, I had transformed into a smoky red wine fan through and through. I thought whites were all syrupy. I had a closed mind. I was outright wrong.

Main & Geary Pinot Grigio, while arguably not even close to the best Pinot Grigio, made me a fan of the varietal about a decade after that trip to Florence.

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I bought Main & Geary for the first time two years ago at a BevMo 5 cent wine sale (Yes, I sing the song: 5 cennnttt winnne sale). One, it was inexpensive: $12 for the first, 5 cents for the second. It’s become a favorite sipping wine, the kind you go to when you’re making lemon-butter shrimp stir-fry. It’s not complex or super special, but it’s crisp and refreshing and has a hint of melon. Like a good alfredo pasta or Martha’s Perfect Mac & Cheese are comfort food, I think of it as comfort wine.

There’s often a bottle chilling in my fridge and when I go to a 5 cent sale, it’s one of the first things in my cart.

Do you have a favorite Pinot Grigio? Tell me about it! Try Main & Geary and give me your review in the comments.

 Nuts and Bolts

  • Winery: Main & Geary
  • Type: Pinot Grigio
  • Origin: California (bottle’s not specific)
  • Vintage: 2012
  • Price: $12
  • Alcohol content: 13.9%
  • When to drink: On your porch, on a hot day while gossiping with a girlfriend