Pfaffenheim is a brand that I stand behind for good quality, complex, and affordable wines. They really know how to make an amiable product. As Pfaffenheim’s wines are made in the Alsatian style, I particularly enjoy their Gewürztraminer, as it bursts forth with tropical fruit flavours. Alsace pushes the “edges” of wine by making bold, crisp, and “extreme” styles. Pfaffenheim does a great job of representing these traits. Now, their Pinot Gris is no exception to the rule; Alsace is known to produce some of the finest Pinot Gris around. Lucky for Pfaffenheim, eh?
In the White Wine Guide, Jim Ainsworth & Simon Woods point out the following about Pinot Gris:
The diversity of dry white wines made with Pinot Gris is alarming. […] Top Alsace Pinot Gris can be golden in colour, occasionally with a pink tinge, with a heady, spicy bouquet, a rich, oily texture and plump citrus-fruit. […] In Alsace, even the humble versions have body and spice, while better wines can have hints of smoke, honey and butter, allied to flavours of peaches, crystallized fruit and minerals. It usually seems that there is insufficient acidity for them to age, but they do so remarkably. (pg. 102-103)
At 13.5%, this golden coloured white wine showed excellent characteristics typical of Pinot Gris. Its fruity and sweet bouquet was of light+ intensity, but it wafted of honey and juicy ripe pears, with a fresh squeeze of lemon. This off dry wine had the added curiosity of minerality on the palate and a hint of biscuit. The honey sweetness continued on the palate, and proved delightful, as the viscosity of the wine was slightly creamy, leaving one to imagine the similarity to a liquified honey. Now, don’t get me wrong! This wine was not overly sweet or thick in texture; it simply mirrored honey in a very delicate way. The finish was light, and it had white stone essences to it. All said and done, Pfaffenheim’s Pinot Gris seems to be a good illustration of what an Alsatian Pinot Gris is capable of presenting.
I tried their Pinot Gris alongside some Malaysian cuisine in early September. The Pinot Gris paired excellently with the Ipoh Char Hor Fun & Rendang Beef Curry dishes I ordered. This is most likely due to the fact that the viscosity (think 2% milk for a white wine of this style) paired well with the gravies in the dishes. The medium+ acidity perfectly complemented the prawns in the noodle dish.
Fast Fact: Pinot Gris is known as the “spicy” Pinot, and it is a mutation of Pinot Noir!
Pfaffenheim’s Pinot Gris is available at BC Liquor Stores and LCBO stores for $17.99 and $19.95 respectively.