Pinot Gris can be wonderful, with medium, yet luscious body packed with honeyed fruits and apple and pear notes. And as it’s alter ego Pinot Grigio it can make clean crisp easy drinking wines. Unfortunately, as Pinot Grigio it can also be uninteresting, but not so Pinot Gris. Pinot Gris homeland is Burgundy apparently it is a mutant version of Pinot Noir! It found in very small numbers there, but it makes some excellent wines as Pinot Gris in Alsace, France and it is one of a number of wines that is starting to shine in the new world as the search for alternatives to Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc gets under way. For my money some of the best examples can be found in New Zealand and Victoria in Australia. These wines are grown in the cooler areas and produce some exceptional varietal examples.
The Tussock Pinot Gris from Nelson, on New Zealand’s South Island is a wonderful example, medium bodied on the palate with aromas of pear, fig and some honeyed notes. The palate is silky with great balance and rich flavours of pear and apple leading to a hint of sweetness on the finish. This wine is a delight roast pork.