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Professional Ratings: 89 The Wine Advocate, 88 Wine & Spirits
Region: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Varietal: Pinot Gris/Grigio
Other Info: Screw Cap Wines, Green Wines
Style: Fruity & Smooth
Alcohol By Volume: 13.5%
Item no. 117829
Creamy pale-gold in color, with estery aromas of fresh pear blossom and juicy green apple. Tropical notes from the nose become bright Meyer lemon, pink grapefruit, cranberry, and orange peel on the palate. The entry is rich and clean building to a slightly tangy, lingering finish. Due to its lovely balance and acid, this Pinot Gris will age well for 3 to 5 years from release. Serve slightly chilled.
We recommend this wine by itself as an aperitif or paired with a summer dish such as Thai smoked salmon, or grilled asparagus served with a sauce maltaise (a hollandaise made with blanched orange zest and blood orange).
'This is pressed directly, with no skin contact,' notes Bernard Lacroute of WillaKenzie's tank-rendered, (virtually) lactose-free, lees-enriched 2011 Pinot Gris, 'but, perhaps strangely enough, we like some oxidation, so we don't add much SO2.' The succulent peachy fruit I associate with this grape (at least, at its best) is very much in evidence on the nose as well as on a refreshing yet subtly creamy palate. Wood smoke and mint accent the peach, supplemented by honeydew melon, and lead to a lusciously lingering finish. It can be done: a Willamette Pinot Gris recognizably of its grape; possessed of enticement, textural allure, and refreshment; and modestly priced. What's more, based on my observation of a three and a half year old Pinot Blanc vinified the same way, I suspect that this Pinot Gris will have a correspondingly useful bottle life.
Scent of apple and fruit blossom give way to weighty, full-bodied flavors of ripe apple and pear, with more than enough acidity to drive all that fruit through the finish. Pair with something rich, like a pork chop.