Pinot grigio isn’t a grape that you hear much about on Long Island. There isn’t much of it grown and only two wineries bottle it varietally — Channing Daughters Winery and Martha Clara Vineyards.

In the past, I’ve found MCV’s to be pretty bland, boring and flat on the palate. But, the 2007 bottling, winemaker Juan Eduardo Micieli-Martinez’s first with the winery, shows promise and balance, bringing much more to the table than your average cheap grigio from Italy.

On the nose, all of that classic citrus character is here — coming through mainly as grapefruit, lemon
and lemon zest aromas — but what sets this apart from the boring
lemon-water Pinot Grigios that line wine shop shelves is a subtle richness and
faintly herbal, faintly almondy note.

Similar flavors come through on the palate. My notes say "fresh-squeezed lemon, lime zest, sweet grapefruit" and the acidity is
terrific. I did notice that when ice cold, there is a bit of a sour, bitter citrus pith (the white part between the zest and the pulp) flavor. Letting it warm a bit helps.

I’ve tasted this wine a few times since it’s release and it keeps improving. In fact, Juan thinks it will be tasted great by the time
Labor Day rolls around. But, it’s been selling briskly and may be sold out by then.

It’s good right out of the fridge, let it
warm just a bit so that you don’t miss on some of the secondary flavors.

It doesn’t affect the juice inside, but I like the new, fun phonetic label on this one too. Look for it on some other whites in the future…and for screw caps.

Grape(s): 100% Pinot Grigio
Producer: Martha Clara Vineyards
AVA: North Fork of Long Island
Price: $16

(2.5 out of 5 | Average-to-Recommended)

(About LENNDEVOURS’ Ratings)