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Jun 12, 2007 05:29 AM

Pinot Grigio suggestions.....

I'm normally a red wine drinker, but with the warmer weather here, I am craving something cold and crisp. I DON'T like sweet wines at all, and I don't particularly like peach. I tried a good Pinot Grigio recently called Tiefenbrunner that was nice, but looking for others, as well. I'm thinking of dry and cheap, an everyday type of bottle. Suggestions?

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  1. This may not be the exact direction you were looking for but I love the St. Supery Sauvignon Blanc for summer. My wine lingo is somewhat lacking so I don't know about undertones, finish, etc. but it's got a citrus taste.. some grapefruit. It's great with food or alone. It's not what I consider cheap, around $16.00 a bottle, but I think a very good value. Hope that helps some. Don't you love talking about wine at 7:30 in the morning?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Texchef

      Ha! Yes, I'm up very early daily for my work, but I could talk food and wine anytime of day. :-)

      I don't really know proper wine lingo, either....but I know what I like! Thanks to all for the suggestions....

    2. Availabilility depends very much on location, but Pighin, Sta Margherita, and Cannelungo (from Collavini) would be safe bets for you. Cin cin!

      1. For a nice Pinot Grigio with a bit more heft, try Livio Felluga. Also, if you're looking for cold, crisp and want to branch out even further, try to find wines made from the Arneis grape - they'll come from the Piedmont region

        1 Reply
        1. re: frankiec

          I would recomend St'Elena Pinto Grigio if you like something a little more complex and not not watery.

        2. For what it is, the Tiefenbrunner is typically quite nice and one of the better ones in its price range...

          I find Pinot Grigio terribly overpriced in the U.S. Quite literally, Santa Margherita -- which gos for $20 to $25 in the U.S., sometimes more, was findable for $4.50 the last time I was in Italy (of course, that was 4 years ago, before the dollar collapsed). The wine are pleasant and inoffensive, but, by and large, not interesting to me. The excpetion is the wines from way way up north, often virtually in Switzerland. Also, some of the Friulian examples (which are also way north). I would look to the white wines of Friuli (which do include Pinot Grigio / Pinot Gris) and also to Soave and Arneis for my Italian white fix.

          6 Replies
          1. re: whiner

            Wow, whiner, I did a double take when I saw the price for Santa Margherita. I thought that it was getting pricey when I paid $16.95 (CAD, not USD!) last week. I expect to pay slightly less for the next vintage, on the strength of the Canadian dollar.

            1. re: hungry_pangolin

              Whiner is on the money here. Santa Margherita is terribly overpriced for what it is -- you're paying for marketing and advertising essentially. Tiefenbrunner is quite nice, and I also can highly recommend Arneis, those from the Roero region -- again in agreement with whiner.

              Try Pinot Gris -- the same grape as Pinot Grigio, but picked riper (so the flavors are a bit rounder and fuller). Pinot Gris also sometimes sees a bit of oak rather than only stainless steel (as is the case for Pinot Grigio), another reason for the slight flavor difference. You'll find some good Pinot Gris here in America: Luna in Napa Valley (labeled as Pinot Grigio but it's really Pinot Gris), King in Washington State, and many Oregon producers.

              Frankiec recommends Livio Felluga, an excellent producer from Friuli. You could try any of their whites, though I find the Pinot Bianco (Pinot Blanc) from Italy doesn't have much to it.

              Other white grapes to check out are Albarino, Verdejo (described as "Pinot Blanc with a brain" by Emile Peynaud), Vinho Verde (zin1953 recommends those from the Monção region and he knows his juice), Torrontes (Susana Balbo, especially), Fiano, Greco di Tufo and Falanghina. You can find very reasonable buys on all, and some of these are downright inexpensive. Hugel's Gentile (about $10) is a great buy, and the Trimbach whites (both from Alsace) are always solid.

              You might also enjoy Caymus Conundrum and Bennett Lane's White Maximus -- both incredibly refreshing blends of white grapes, though there are tiny hints of tropical fruit and, dare I say, peach.

              Notice no recs of Chardonnay, Riesling or SB. Lots of amazing white wines in the world
              and many for you to discover this summer. Let us know what you like.

              1. re: maria lorraine


                I had the 2004 Conundrum earlier this year. While the floral notes were intriguing and quite unique, I dont see it as much of a "refreshing" wine and found it to be rather heavy compared to the other wines you've mentioned. Specifically, I thought it was quite over-oaked, and the vanilla flavor too strong. It did go pretty well with a simple fish and potato soup and I made for dinner, but IMO, it was a lot closer to a Chardonnay than I had expected.

                I'd not heard of the Bennett Lane, but will give their White Maximus a try soon.

                1. re: mengathon

                  Interesting comment, and I tend to agree. The blends are comparable, but without question the Bennett Lane White Maximus is really lively and refreshing. It's mainly SB, with about 10% Chard and 2% Muscat Canelli. Fun, and I've enjoyed it with shrimp, lobster, mango, and an usual choucroute with chicken-apple sausage with sweet onion and fresh fennel "sauerkraut." Knocked my socks off. Same wine added to braise.

                  1. re: mengathon

                    Try the Beringer Alluvium White. It is lighter than Conundrum and without the muscat.

                    1. re: chickstein

                      Thanks Chick, I'll give it a shot. My local wine place has the Alluvium, but not the Bennett Lane. The Red Maximus is available, but on the website listed as "Benton Lane." I had not been aware that the boundaries of Oregon extended into Napa...

            2. Different grape, but you might like an Alsatian Pinot Blanc. Crisp, clean, never too pricey. Alsatian Pinot Gris is fantastic too, but I've never seen one fall into the cheap category. Or how about a muscadet? Great prices, good summer quaffing.

              The only time I had a St. Supery Sav Blanc I found it unpleasantly sweet.