Nichol Vineyard, Naramata Bench (Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada) Pinot Gris 2018

($21):  Sometimes it’s good to order blindly from a wine list without seeing the bottle or knowing anything about the wine.  The label indicated this “white” wine had undergone 36-hours of skin contact and oak aging, techniques that I usually find off-putting in Pinot Gris.  The skin contact explains the light copper color because the skin of the Pinot Gris grape is light red.  The wine was delicious: fresh and deep without being heavy or overdone.  The oak aging added depth without overpowering or dominating.  Despite skin contact and oak aging, both of which extract tannins, there were no intrusive tannins, just a welcome bit of structure.  This Pinot Gris is a great choice for sushi.  It’s also a reminder that you can’t assess a wine by technique — or stated alcohol level.  You need to taste.
91 Michael Apstein Feb 4, 2020