2020 Bollini Pinot Grigio, Trentino, Italy (Alcohol 13%, Residual Sugar 2 g/l) LCBO Vintages $18.95 (750ml bottle)

It’s taken me over a decade to really come around to this wine. I can still remember my first time tasting it all those years ago, and originally I wasn’t really taken by it, however over the intervening years I’ve seen the wine become both richer and more defined. Upon tasting the most recent vintage, I recognise that I’ve definitely fallen for its charms, as I feel it it has evolved into a solid benchmark wine for the region. And the new labelling is a massive improvement aesthetically.

Although Italian Pinot Grigio isn’t one of those wine styles I usually tend to gravitate towards, I’ve found myself purchasing this bottling repeatedly over the summer, and I’ve never been disappointed. Quite the opposite actually, as this wine has seriously grown on me.

While it’s not necessarily an overly complex wine, it does express certain extremely appealing nuances that are sadly lacking in the majority of Pinot Grigios in this particular price bracket. With this in mind, I feel that it overdelivers aromatically, texturally, and flavour-wise, meaning that I simply have to score it rather favourably, as I am continually on the search for some extra bang for one’s hard-earned buck.

On the bouquet there’s an abundance of ripe Bartlett pear, crisp green apple, Manuka honey, clove spice, and an enchanting fig aromatic that reminds me of when that fruit gets so very ripe that starts to sweat beads of sugar.

In the mouth it is certainly one of the slightly richer expressions of this grape, with a satisfyingly mouthfilling weight. It’s bone dry, but that ripe fruit does carry through onto the palate in a rather marvellous fashion. The rounded and smooth acid profile is extremely well balanced with the fruit, without being aggressive in the slightest although there is a crisp green apple freshness here that really lifts the wine. The finish is sustained and decidedly powdery, almost talcum/chalk dust in nature, a fitting end for such a well executed package.

It drinks enjoyably by itself, but I found that it really lends itself to lighter chicken or pork dishes, and was simply gorgeous alongside a white pizza with pear, speck, and truffle oil.

Without a doubt, quality-wise, this is head and shoulders above most Pinot Grigios found in this market at this price point.

(Four out of a possible five apples)