Thursday, May 24, 2007

RSVP Tasting: Pinot Gris

Wine Val D'Adige Santa Margherita 2005
From Italy
Alcohol Content 12%
Price $21.35 (Spinnakers, BC)
Modest nose; a bit watery on the attack. Pleasant, nothing obnoxious, no huge acid (no huge fruit, either.) Mostly pretty indifferent--- you don't learn much about either the grape or where it's grown. Is inoffensiveness worth 20 bucks? This is a big seller, so there are obviously drinkers who think so.

Wine Lurton Pinot Gris 2006
From Argentina
Alcohol Content 12.5%
Price $11.99 (BC Liquor Stores)
Nose is a bit indistinct but it's there; tastes a bit green---both in the sense that something's unfinished, and the wine's tendency to veer towards notes of stems and seeds, as opposed to mineral on the palate. More intense than the Santa above, although its personality a bit unfinished. Nicely balanced overall (even the colour is attractive) and altogether a package that the group's eminance grise pronounced ‘a steal---a gorgeous wine for eleven bucks.’

Wine Mission Hill Pinot Grigio 2006
From British Columbia
Alcohol Content 13%
Price $18.30 (Spinnakers, BC)
Pretty big nose---big everything else, too. Citrus on the palate; decent balance; overall, this is nicely managed. But there are murmurs from the table that this doesn't really taste like Gris... (one taster: ‘there's been muscat added!’) Wine has been manipulated, possibly so you can pair it with anything; more likely to broaden its appeal. Still tasty; although it's more of a marketing scheme than a wine. Intelligently designed rather than compelling; tries for the big audience and will likely get it.

Wine Cedar Creek Pinot Gris 2005
From British Columbia
Alcohol Content
Price $16.99
Nice, balanced nose leads to an attack watery enough to seem more like a retreat. Recovers for a nice, dry finish with hints of wood. The overall effect convinces you at least that the grapes came from one place (the Mission Hill above was widely-sourced and tasted it), tasting both of grapes and geography. But the taster-in-chief was unconvinced that it was more than a one-dimensional flash-in-the-glass: '20 bucks? I wouldn't do it.'

Wine Tinhorn Creek Pinot Gris 2005
From British Columbia
Alcohol Content 13.7%
Price $16.06 (Spinnakers, BC)
A mild nose and good finish that divided the room about everything in between. Reactions to the impression this wine stamped on the palate ranged from 'too acid' to 'sweet' to 'flabby' to 'an everyday party wine'---this last a potentially-deadly veiled insult. There was a consensus that it tasted tinkered-with (one taster thought it tasted like Chardonnay), and none too successfully.

Wine Mezocorona Pinot Grigio 2006
From Italy
Alcohol Content 12.5%
Price $17.11 (Spinnakers, BC)
Light, user-friendly, generic, not-unpleasant afternoon spritzer-stuff. Easygoing, but nothing to make a case for the grape. In the words of one (perhaps rapidly-tiring) taster, 'redundant'.

Wine Gehringer Private Reserve Pinot Gris 2005
From British Columbia
Alcohol Content 12.5%
Price $16.02 (Spinnakers, BC)
'An almost... happy nose' in the words of a now-unidentified taster. Big and sweet in every way with all flavors nicely in balance. From virtually the same location as the Tinhorn Creek, but with an obviously different game-plan. Consensus best B.C. Gris amongst those tasted.

Wine Willm Tokay Pinot Gris 2005
From Alsace, France
Alcohol Content 13%
Price $23.99 (BC Liquor Stores)
Why did we drink all the others? Sweet and structured; rich fruit, gobs of finesse; wine for grown-ups. This is how it's done.

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