Wine of the week: A to Z Pinot Gris 2015

A to Z Pinot GrisThe A to Z pinot gris is widely available, well made, and shows off the Oregon style

Once, for a cheap wine talk, I used an A to Z wine. The audience was mostly dumbfounded, since they had never heard of A to Z, an Oregon producer, and didn’t believe that a wine without the Winestream Media seal of approval could be that well done.

Well, it is, and the A to Z pinot gris ($14, sample, 13.5%) is just one more example.

Pinot gris is the same grape as the Italian pinot grigio; the difference is in approach and terroir. The Italians prefer an austere, almost tonic water wine, with little fruit, while the Oregon style has lime and tropical fruit with a fuller and richer middle. The A to Z pinot gris is firmly in the Oregon camp, and the lime and lime zest practically jump around your mouth. The finish isn’t what it could be – a bit bitter, from all the acidity in the wine – but it’s still enjoyable and worth drinking.

Drink this chilled, and it’s yet another white wine as summer arrives, either for porch sipping, for chicken on the grill, or those bratwursts have that been sitting in the freezer.

A word about the price – the winery sells the wine for $15, it’s $14 on Wine-Searcher, and I’ve seen it for as little as $10 or $12 in grocery stores and the largest chain retailers. At $10 or $12, it’s that much more of a value.

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