Is Pinot Grigio SWEET or DRY? – Guide to Choosing & Pairing

Is Pinot Grigio sweet or dry wine? If you’re not sure, we’re here to clear the air!

If you want to know whether you should select Pinot Grigio for your next meal or dinner party, read this guide first to see if it will go with your entree.

Let’s explore Pinot Grigio.

Is Pinot Grigio Sweet or Dry?

pinot grigio on a table
Pinot Grigio is a dry white wine that is produced traditionally in Europe but now spans the globe.

Italian Pinot Grigio is a dry wine. It typically has a more fruity, refreshing taste with sharp acid.

French Pinot Grigio has a little honey flavor.

American Pinot Grigio is less acidic with more pronounced fruit flavors.

All styles of pinot grigio have fruity flavors that range from lime on the acidic end of the spectrum to nectarines on the sweet end with other tart fruits ranging along the spectrum of acidity.

See our related article, Pinot Grigio vs Sauvignon Blanc, where we compare these two wines to help you pick your next pour!

What is Pinot Grigio Wine?

Pinot Grigio is a type of white wine that is made from the Pinot Gris grape varietal.

This varietal can produce both a sweet and dry wine, depending on the method of production.

In general, however, Pinot Grigio is considered to be one of the driest styles of white wine.

The terms Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris are interchangeable – they refer to the same grapes and the same wine.

Some key characteristics of pinot grigio include its crisp acidity, light body, moderate alcohol content, and refreshing finish.

Pinot grigio is typically a dry wine, which means that it has little to no residual sugar.

This makes it a great choice for those who are looking for a refreshing but not sweet white wine.

The only sweet pinot grigio in production is a cheap supermarket pinot grigio in a box.

While it can be slightly sweet depending on its level of fermentation, most pinot grigio wines have a crisp and refreshing flavor with notes of citrus, peach, and pear.

It has a lower alcohol content than many other wines and ranges from 11.5% to 13.5% ABV.

Here’s an interesting look at how Pinot Grigio compares to other white wines made from premium grapes.

What Makes a Wine Dry or Sweet?

The main difference between sweet and dry wines is that sweet wines are made with residual sugar content, while dry wines do not contain any residual sugar.

The amount of residual sugar in a wine is influenced by factors such as the harvesting time for the grapes, fermentation conditions, and the aging process.

Typically, sweeter wines have more concentrated fruit flavors and aromas than drier wines.

How to Pair Pinot Grigio With Food

Pinot Grigio with a meal
Pinot Grigio is a dry wine that pairs great with everything from light snacks to spicy Asian food.

To best enjoy Pinot Grigio, it’s recommended to pair it with light seafood dishes or salads, and spicy foods like Thai cuisine.

The light flavor pairs well with lighter fare such as salads, pasta dishes, chicken, and seafood.

Its acidity also makes it a good choice for pairing with richer dishes.

For example, Pinot Grigio can balance out the creaminess of a dish like risotto or chicken Alfredo.

So whether you’re looking for a wine to enjoy on its own or to pair with food, Pinot Grigio is a versatile option that is sure to please.

Tips for Pairing Food With Pinot Grigio

a bottle of pinot grigio in the kitchen
Pairing Pinot Grigio with sweet pairings will make the wine taste bitter. It’s best to pair it with more savory dishes and snacks.

When pairing Pinot Grigio with food, it is important to remember that the wine itself is dry.

This means that you should avoid dishes that are very sweet or high in sugar.

Instead, focus on finding complementary flavors that will not overwhelm the delicate taste of the wine.

Robust foods like red sauces will overwhelm the wine, while sweeter foods like fruit will make the wine taste bitter.

If you want to have light snacks with pinot, go for olives, tapas, and savory bread and crackers.

How to Store Your Pinot Grigio

Once you have opened your bottle of Pinot Grigio, it is important to know how to properly store the wine to ensure that it does not go bad.

Drink your new bottles within 3 years of purchase.

White wines are best when stored in a cool, dark place. The ideal storage temperature for white wines is between 55 and 59 degrees Fahrenheit.

You can store your open bottle of Pinot Grigio in the fridge for up to 4 days as long as you reseal wine bottles.

If you want to keep the wine for longer than that, consider buying a wine preservation system like the Coravin.

This will allow you to enjoy your wine over months without losing any flavor or aroma.

When storing your unopened Pinot Grigio, lay the bottles on their sides in a cool, dark place where they won’t experience jostling or vibration.

Wine racks in a basement will do the trick if you don’t have a wine cooler.

How to Chill Pinot Grigio

Pinot Grigio on ice
Pinot Grigio is always best when served chilled.

If you want to enjoy your Pinot Grigio at its best, the first step is to properly chill it.

While some white wines may benefit from being served at room temperature, this is not the case with Pinot Grigio.

To chill your bottle of Pinot Grigio quickly and easily, fill a bowl or bucket halfway with ice and water.

Place the sealed wine bottle into the ice bath, leaving it there for about 15-20 minutes until the desired temperature is reached.

You can also use a vented wine chiller if you prefer.

This will allow air to circulate around the bottle and keep your Pinot Grigio cold without getting too watered down.

Another option for chilling your Pinot Grigio is to use a dual zone wine fridge.

These specialized appliances are designed to keep your wines at the ideal temperature for serving.

Whether you want to sip a chilled glass of Pinot Grigio on its own or pair it with your favorite dish, knowing the best way to chill the wine will help ensure that you always get the most out of every bottle.

Final Thoughts

Pinot Grigio can be bone dry or have a more fruity flavor and a bit of unctuous honey.

It really depends on where it’s made and the age of the grapes that went into the bottle.

Regardless, for those looking for a low-carb wine, or a perfect pairing for light foods, Pinot Grigio should be on your short list of wines to try.

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