Many of you might have wondered at one time or another – what really is the difference between Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris wines? This blog aims to educate you on the subject that despite the fact that both Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio wines are made from the same grape variety, both wines differ from each other in certain aspects.
Pinot Gris grapes display a greyish pink skin colour, which is why the variety was named so in the first place (Gris refers to grey in French). Although Pinot Gris originated in France, it is their neighbours across the border – the Italians – who helped Pinot Gris gain worldwide popularity and recognition. In Italy, Pinot Gris goes by the name ‘Pinot Grigio’. These grapes are used to craft dry white wines featuring apple, pear and citrus flavours with medium acidity. After Chardonnay, Pinot Gris has become one of the most widely consumed white wine varietal in the US, with Australia and UK closely following the lead.
The difference lies not in the fruit, but in the style of wine produced.
Pinot Grigio wines are Italian-styled; wines which are generally light-bodied, fresh and crisp, with floral aromas, stone fruit characters and underlying spice nuances. These wines are great for casual drinking, paired with foods like salads, cold seafood and spicy Asian cuisines.
Pinot Gris wines are fuller-bodied and complex, presenting a spicier, richer and more textural palate. These wines usually have a greater ageing and cellaring potential, allowing the vibrant fruit characters to intensify and enhance. Serving these wines with roast meats like pork, chicken and veal can be a rewarding and pleasurable experience.
Pinot Gris wines from big brands like Tim Adams, Tamar Ridge and Stoneleigh are absolute delights to consume!