The Cellar: The Other Pinot

Friday, June 20, 2014

 

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Many of you will associate the Pinot grape with its most popular genetic mutations Gris/Grigio, Noir/Nero and Meunier. This is not surprising as these three varieties makes up a huge percentage of our overall Pinot consumption. But did you know that Pinot has another interesting mutant sister called Pinot Blanc? If not, I highly recommend you go to your local wine merchant and ask for one.

Pinot Blanc (named Pinot Bianco in Italy and Weissburgunder in Germany) is one of the star varieties in Alsace, France where it makes some of the region’s best whites, as well as sparkling wines - most noticeably many of the (almost) always delicious Cremant d’Alsace. In the Alsace wines labeled ‘Pinot Blanc’ can be (and often is) blended with Auxerrois without it being labeled. So if you’re looking for Pinot Blancs pure expression I recommend you ask for something like this week’s example, the locally available 2012 Pinot Bianco from Elena Walch. I always recommend tasting a new wine next to one you are familiar with. In this case I would advise pinning it against one of your favorite Pinot Grigios. As you taste these wines side-by-side you’ll probably notice more color and weight in the Bianco and more concentrated fruit – think ripe apricot and pears. Great stuff!

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Don’t forget that tomorrow is the Coastal Wine Trail’s 3rd annual Wine, Cheese & Chocolate Festival featuring the wines of Coastal Vineyards, Greenvale Vineyards, Langworthy Farm, Newport Vineyards, Running Brook Vineyards, Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard, Travessia Winery, Truro Vineyards + South Hollow Spirits, Westport Rivers Vineyard & Winery, and Stonington Vineyards. The event features three sessions; 11am-1:30pm, 2:30pm-5pm, and 6pm-8:30pm and takes place at the Westport Fairgrounds, 200 Pine Hill Road, Westport, MA. Tickets can be purchased through the Coastal Wine Trail Website.Tickets are $25 in advance and $40 at the door.

Cheers!

Steffen Rasch is a Certified Sommelier and Specialist of Wine. Feel free to email him at [email protected] with any wine-related question or learn about wine in person by signing up for one of his tastings through the Providence Wine Academy.

 

Related Slideshow: 10 New England Wine Getaways

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Diamond Hill Vineyards

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Westport Rivers

Westport Rivers Vineyard & Winery

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Travessia Winery

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