"Drink at, or near pictures of, the beach."


Pinot Grigio. It's the wine equivalent of Taylor Swift, in that it's the number two wine in the country, (for number one singer, Taylor fans, see Beyoncé), it's very popular among young white women, and each of your self-proclaimed wine expert friends living in Bed Stuy hates it because it's "too simple." 
Pinot Grigio is often characterized by it's trademark strong acidity, fervent green apple and citrus flavors, and affordable price. It's an easy wine, for easy days. Lemonade for adults. But recently I found myself wondering, why stop at the lemonade? Why not try the punch, the iced tea, the homemade watermelon kombucha? Point being, sometimes it's easy to stop at the first signs of success. So this post goes out to all my Pinot Grigio-or-bust drinkers, who after another finished bottle are left wondering, what next? What else might I like? The ones who arrive at their corner liquor store only to have the salesperson already walking towards the back shelf to grab your signature $13 double bottle of Yellow Tail Pinot Grigio (or, depending on your budget, a $20 bottle of Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio). Lets break it down:

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Art by Caitlin Dundon

Listed above are six attributes that are probably part of most Perpetual-Pinot-Purchases. When thinking about wines that might be natural stepping stones from Pinot Grigio, I focused on two attributes: Easy-drinking & refreshing. 
So, let's get it started.

1. Sauvignon Blanc:

I'm actually a big proponent of cooking with Sauvignon Blanc. Though I rarely put it in the food.
To me, Sauvignon Blanc is the most natural successor to Pinot Grigio. One can typically expect green apple and melon flavors to abound. Summer and autumn fruits combine with a bit more of a grassy citrus flavor, and a slighter body than in Pinot Grigios. This means that a Sauvignon Blanc will, quite literally, feel lighter in your mouth, than a Pinot Grigio. Think of it as frozen yogurt vs. ice cream. Like the fro-yo, Sauvignon Blanc is lighter, and typically has a tad less sweetness.
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Good Buys: Bayten Sauvignon Blanc 2015 ($15), Vignobles Raymond Les Hauts de Lagarde Blanc 2015 ($12), Montes Spring Harvest Sauvignon Blanc 2016 ($14).
Good Pairings: Drink while cooking dinner, at midday summer picnics, or with most foods from the realm of Poseidon (salmon, lobster, hermit crabs, etc).

2. Riesling:
If Sauvignon Blanc is a lemon biscotti, and Pinot Grigio is a lemon tart, Riesling is a lemon crème brûlée.
Riesling can be a divisive grape. For some it will always be too sweet. For others, the german labels can be rather intimidating. But the diversity offered by Riesling, with its dry (feinherb), off-dry (kabinett), and sweet (auslese) categorizations, means it can pair well with oodles of different scenarios. They often contain lighter, delicate fruit flavors, like peach and apricot, but have a strong acidity similar to those of Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc.
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Good Buys: Riesling Mulheimer Sonnenlay Zeppelin Richter 2015 ($14), Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Riesling 2015 ($12) Donnhoff Riesling 2015 $20).
Good Pairings: Drink with friends while prepping for a party, at, or near pictures of, a beach, or with sautéed chicken and fresh vegetables.


3: Gamay:
Characterized by a strong sense of purpose, and a can do attitude, this grape is the gateway red wine.
Maybe you're not one for baby steps. You like to drink now, ask questions later. If so, you might just be a potential Gamay drinker. Made famous for being the signature grape behind French Beaujolais, Gamay is about as subtle as Shaquille O'Neil. I view Gamay as an affordable alternative to Pinot Noir, with a punchier fruit flavor. Imagine biting into a cherry/raspberry tart, and because Gamay is best served slightly chilled, throw a scoop of vanilla ice cream into that image. That's tasty.
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Good Buys: Beaujolais Michel Guignet 2015 ($14), Bonnet Rouge Beaujolais Villages 2013 ($17), Dupeuble Pere et Fils Beaujoulais 2015 ($15)
Good Pairings: Drink while watching a Judd Apatow RomCom, on a porch or balcony after getting home from work, 
or with veritable mountain ranges of bread, meats, and cheeses.

 


Comments

01/25/2017 4:49pm

We love to cook with Sauvignon Blanc in the food (ok, and in the glass). Did a salmon with an Oregon Pinot Gris earlier this month & it felt great, good in the sauce and in the glass. I love the suggestion of Gamay as a batter-up to Pinot Grigio. Just wrote about a Sauvignon Blanc clone (27) with Muscat aromatics...they do one from Lange Twins in Lodi...haven't tasted, but sounds like a winner.

One more thing: Great post, fun to read & satisfying as an explained. Cheers!

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02/14/2017 1:19am

I found out this Pinot Gris that is creamy and oaky in texture. I first I thought that it was an odd flavor. But after I tasted it, it was very delicious. Even my wife told me that she loved it. And it goes really well with lemon chicken. And they even say that drinking it is good for people who has a hangover. It also has the same price as the one pinot gris that is made in Italy.

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07/08/2017 7:48pm

Pinot Grigio is just one of the wines that I just could not resist every time. Just by reading this article, makes me want to grab one right now. It's like seducing and tempting me to drink them. I really love the right balance of sweetness and that fruity taste of a good Pinot Grigio. Thanks for sharing this very informative article with us. I think I could finally understand all of the differences right now.

06/30/2017 2:46pm

Pinot Grigio enjoys popularity across the world. And, it’s easy to see why. It’s on every supermarket’s shelves for a start, so it’s easy to pick up on your way home from work. It’s also versatile, easy drinking and makes a refreshing summer drink. If you have guests, it’s likely they will like Pinot Grigio and there’s one on pretty much every restaurant wine list. But, it’s all too easy to keep on grabbing a bottle of Pinot Grigio with your weekly shop and becoming so stuck in your ways that you don’t try anything else. If you love this style of wine, there are lots of other options out there just waiting to be tasted!

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Great tip! I'll be having a party this coming weekend. I'm researching some drinks to serve on my party because some guest are not fan of beers, so I have to look for wines instead. According to my research, Pinot grinio is a great partner when you are serving seafood. Half of my dish are seafood, so Pinot grinio is one of my list to buy for the party. Additionally it helps to reduce bad cholesterol, which is important for my grandfather. I'll consider as an alternative the other wines listed on your post.

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01/30/2017 3:43am

At its most basic, Pinot Gris/Grigio is a refreshing white wine that, when served cold, is the perfect respite from a hot summer day that's why it is perfect to drink at the beach or near pictures of the beach. There is also what you call Pinot Gris. Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio are in fact the exact same grape variety but wines are different.Yes it may confusing but Pinot Grigio wines are typically lighter-bodied, crisp, fresh, with vibrant stone fruit and floral aromas and a touch of spice while Pinot Gris wines are more full-bodied, richer, spicier, and more viscous in texture.Since Pinot Grigio is light, it is best suited to enjoy with lighter dishes also such as grilled shrimp, fish or any light appetizers.

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04/09/2017 7:34pm

Thanks for this information... Love to read your articles.

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05/13/2017 5:30am

Hi friends.... Thank to share useful information. 

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