WINE REVIEWS: Fashionable pinot gris

Pinot gris is one of the most fashionable white wines these days, perhaps because it doesn't seem to have much character of its own so it doesn't call attention to itself and adapts to a wide variety of food.

Most hint of tropical or stone fruit, have a little sweetness and mouthfilling alcohol that leaves a warmth, or sometimes a definite heat, on the aftertaste which can be distracting.

However, the best are balanced and have texture and perhaps a suggestion of nuttiness from partial barrel fermentation, wild yeast or contact with lees (dead yeast cells left over from fermentation), which gives them more interest.


◊ BEST UNDER $20

Spinyback Nelson Pinot Gris 2008
(about $17)

Three stars (out of five)

Good value

A light fragrance with hints of nectarines and a suggestion of nuts and butterscotch.

Harmonious and good drinking.

www.waimeaestates.co.nz


Tohu New Zealand Pinot Gris 2008
(about $20)

Three stars (out of five)

Average value

Zesty with hints of tropical fruit, mouthfilling and textural with a dryish finish.

www.tohuwines.co.nz

 

 


Starborough Marlborough Pinot Gris 2008
(about $23)

Three and a half stars (out of five)

Average value

Fragrant with a herbal edge, oozing nectarine and peach, off-dry with a hint of nuttiness and heat on the finish.

starboroughwine.com

 


Bald Hills Pigeon Rocks Central Otago Pinot Gris 2008
(about $25)

Three and a half stars (out of five)

Average value

Hinting of stone fruit and ripe cox's orange apples, this zesty wine is vibrant, off-dry and textural.

www.baldhills.co.nz

 


Seresin Marlborough Pinot Gris 2008
(about $28)

Four stars (out of five)

Good value

A broad, textural mouthfilling wine, fragrant with hints of tropical fruit, a suggestion of toast, nuts and butterscotch from barrel fermentation and wild yeast, which brings an extra dimension to the wine, and a long finish.

www.seresin.co.nz


Amisfield Central Otago Pinot Gris 2008
(about $35)

Four stars (out of five)

Below average value

Charming and stylish, with fruit hinting of quinces and golden kiwi in harmony with the richness and texture and brightness of the finish.

One of the few pinot gris that will reward a couple of years bottle age.

www.amisfield.co.nz


ANOTHER GLASS

Triplebank Awatere Pinot Gris 2008
(about $24)

Three stars (out of five)

Below average value

Triplebank has produced a reliable pinot gris since its first vintage and this fragrant, zesty wine is no execption with hints of stone fruit and quinces, and a sweet but balanced finish.

www.pernod-ricard-nz.com/triplebank.php


Neudorf Maggies Block Nelson Pinot Gris 2008
(about $24)

Three stars (out of five)

Below average value

Nicely balanced with undertones of mineral and nuts mingling with fruit, and full textural mouthfeel.

www.neudorf.co.nz


Goldridge Matakana Pinot Gris 2008
(about $20)

Three stars (out of five)
Average value

One of the drier wines in this batch, hinting of pears and quince, with a slightly savoury, nutty hint and a dry finish.

www.matakanaestate.co.nz


Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Gris 2008
(about $40)

Three and a half stars (out of five)

Below average value

Complex with lots of nutty, toasty flavours underlaid by bright sweet fruit and and a textural finish.

Lots of winemaker input here.

www.martinborough-vineyard.co.nz

- Although wine sent for review is tasted blind to eliminate preconceptions, all wine tasting and evaluation is subjective. These are personal recommendations. charmian.smith@odt.co.nz

 

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