I promise one day it will get warm here in the Willamette Valley. Summer is right around the corner. Although I’ve unpacked my fleece from storage. Here are a few Oregon Pinot Gris to get you in the mood.
2014 Ponzi Vineyards Old Vine Pinot Gris Willamette Valley
Not your typical Pinot Gris but if you like a little barrel influence you might just fall for this wine. Caramelized apple and bananas foster on the nose with pear, apricot, and vanilla custard. Texture and structure take the starring roles on the palate. Pleasantly mouth coating with terrific acid and perfect balance. Flavors are mineral driven with a dry, tart grapefruit that leads to the good kind of bitterness across a long finish. $38
2015 Maryhill Winery Tudor Hills Vineyards Pinot Gris Columbia Valley
A fruity inviting nose of lemon chess pie, dried orange blossom, white tea spice, banana and sweet hay. A very citrusy palate with ripe tangerine and grapefruit tempered with dried flowers, dried apricot, and a little pear. The long juicy mouthwatering finish just makes you want another sip. $16
2016 Foris Pinot Gris Rogue Valley
A tropical citrus nose with fresh green notes of kaffir lime and lemon bay leaves. Spicy sweet floral notes of jasmine and lilac are joined with raw almonds. The palate is a citrus salad of lemon, lime, grapefruit, and nectarine. Honeysuckle and minerality add complexity and the whole package is accentuated with bright acid. $14
2016 Antiquum Farm Daisy Pinot Gris Willamette Valley
Mellow and fruity with beeswax, lemon, lime, orange, pear, minerality and nuttiness. The palate is light, bright and orchestrated by a lemon lime combo. Notes of nuts and hay keep it grounded and lend interest. A long mineral driven finish seals the experience.
2016 Spindrift Cellars Pinot Gris Willamette Valley
The nose and palate remind you of a lemon bar – the curd and the nut flour crust. Apricot and peach join those inviting aromas. The palate is marked with lively acidity and an exciting shift from tart to fruity sweet flavors. $16
2016 Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Gris Willamette Valley
Stone fruit floral perfume with peach and apricot highlights. These aromas repeat on the palate in all of their densely ripe glory. Marzipan lends some nuttiness along with a subtle juicy pear note. Perfumed flavors are balanced with integrated acid and a bittersweet orange and grapefruit zest on the finish. $17
2016 Panther Creek Pinot Gris Willamette Valley
High fresh green scents of lime, and grass meet sweet clementine, ginger spice, vanilla, and jasmine. The palate develops across the tasting experience beginning with juicy tart green apple and subtly transitioning to a riper mellow apple flavor with vanilla shortbread on the finish.
2017 Puffin Brand Pinot Gris Oregon
An easy drinking wine for early spring with a peach dominated nose and palate. Honeydew, slate, and a bit of nuttiness round out the flavors. Lots of body and a balanced acidity that gets the job done without aggression. The finish is long and clean with notes of minerality and salinity. $21
This list previously appeared in the Oregon Wine Press.