Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Happy Birthday Pinot Grigio..Happy birthday to you!

Keep it quiet, but Pinot Grigio has become middle aged.... It is now 50! First produced in the style we now know by the Santa Margherita winery in 1961, when, as their usual style lacked market success, they decided they would create a very lean and fresh wine by picking grapes early and having next to no skin contact during the fermentation. This also meant that the wine was straightforwardly fresh - even perhaps 'citrussy'- and also clear and limpid without the slightly coppery hue that it was wont to take on when fermented with the skins (as can sometimes be noticeable in Alsace Pinot Gris, for example). So they invented the lean and mean, undemanding drinking style that has been so very widely copied. Whereas the fuller style they changed from, which is predominant now only in Alsace, remains much less appreciated. Indeed so successful have the first fifty years been for the style that we bet there are many that do not even know that Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris are exactly the same grape type!
June 11

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