12 Affordable, Ageworthy Oregon Pinot Gris to Try Now

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Pinot Gris from Oregon produces versatile white wines due to Willamette Valley’s cool climate and long ripening seasons. This pinkish-hue grape creates diverse flavor profiles that range from light and crisp to rich and sweet.

Here are 12 examples of Oregon Pinot Gris that deserve your attention.

The Surprising Story of Oregon’s Other Pinot

King Estate 2019 Domaine Estate Grown Made with Biodynamic Grapes Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley); $29, 93 points. This is made from biodynamic fruit aged sur lie for six months prior to bottling. Bright lemon, pink grapefruit, Satsuma orange and a hint of clover make for a compelling palate. The acid-backed fruit is the dominant feature of this complete and delightful wine. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Cardwell Hill 2020 Estate Bottled Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley); $22, 93 points. Rich and supple, this expressive wine pulls together apple, melon, white peach and pear fruit flavors in its core. Light spices and just the right touch of supporting acidity keep it fresh and balanced. The finish is crisp and clearly defined, bringing suggestions of candied watermelon rind as it tails away. —Paul Gregutt

Archery Summit 2019 Vireton Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley) $24, 92 points. This stainless-steel fermented Pinot Gris is loaded with rich and sappy flavors of ripe melon, guava and peach. It has plentiful acidity to keep it lifted and bright, and the power through the finish is exceptional. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Cardwell Hill 2020 Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley); $22, 92 points. This fruity wine has some chewing gum flavors, along with threads of green herbs, lemon and pineapple. The concentration emphasizes the fresh and fully ripe condition of the fruit, which lingers on through a finish laced with wet stone. With this level of ripeness, concentration and balance, it’s a good candidate for another half-decade of cellaring. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Elk Cove 2020 Estate Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley); $19, 92 points. This is a sappy, substantial, deeply fruited wine that packs in pink grapefruit, lemon curd, tangerine and papaya flavors, buoyed by tangy acidity. While delicious already, there’s little doubt it can age gracefully over the next half-decade. Drink through 2026. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Owen Roe 2020 Crawford-Beck Vineyard Pinot Gris (Eola-Amity Hills); $22, 92 points. A brisk and fleshy wine, this packs in plenty of apple, pear and citrus flavors. It’s quite concentrated, with excellent aging potential thanks to impressive natural acidity. It was fermented and aged entirely in stainless steel, accentuating the fruit, the acidity and the brightness overall. Drink through 2026. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Shumaker 2020 Pinot Gris (Tualatin Hills); $18, 92 points. Some trapped carbon dioxide gives this an ultrafresh mouthfeel, though it stops short of spritzy. Brilliant, ripe lemon and orange and peach and papaya fruits shine through, sappy and juicy. With fruit this ripe and delicious, it would seem to be foolish not to dive in and drink it up while young. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Chehalem 2020 Pinot Gris (Chehalem Mountains) $20, 91 points. The latest vintage features plump pear fruit with a fleshy mouthfeel. There’s a streak of vanilla bean and moderate acidity along with a twist of lime. Fermented entirely in stainless, this should be drinking well through 2026. —P.G.

Cooper Mountain 2020 Made with Biodynamic Grapes Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley); $18, 91 points. Rich, ripe and packed with mixed citrus fruits, this delicious biodynamic wine has a lovely mouthfeel, with a weave of acidity and dried herbs. The balance suggests it is capable of aging well for another five years, but there’s no penalty for popping it open right now. Drink now through 2026. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

A to Z 2020 Pinot Gris (Oregon); $16, 90 points. Loaded with flavors of freshly cut pears, this young and vibrant wine has no pretensions to be anything more than delicious. It’s clean and fruity, with balanced acidity and a hint of minerality. Remarkably versatile, make this one of your everyday or weeknight white wine options. Editors’ Choice. —P.G.

Cooper Hill 2020 Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley); $15, 90 points. A second label for Cooper Mountain uses biodynamic estate fruit and is made at the winery. It’s a big, spicy and grassy wine with a smoky vein. That said, it’s a bit like a Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc, such as Pouilly-Fumé, and at this price is a terrific bargain. Best Buy. —P.G.

Foris 2020 Pinot Gris (Rogue Valley); $15, 90 points. Bright and fresh flavors of Bartlett pear are at the core of this elegant effort alongside accents of arugula and cucumber. It’s a stylish and refreshing wine, with a fine balance of fruit and acidity. Best Buy. —P.G.

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Published on October 27, 2021
Topics: Buying Guide