How I was pleasantly surprised by Pinot Blanc #trythis

By / Wine + Drinks / June 22nd, 2018 / 20

Earlier this week, Toronto Sommeliers and wine lovers alike flocked to the Arcadian Loft for the Wines of Germany tasting. I admit, I went for the Riesling, a grape that gives its most iconic examples from the steep, slate vineyards of the Mosel and Rhine river valleys. I wasn’t expecting that two of my top picks of the day were not from Riesling, but from the unassuming, oftentimes shy, Pinot Blanc. Pinot Blanc is Germany’s fifth most planted grape, and growing in popularity amongst German millennial drinkers. I can see why, as after tasting one the word ‘crushable’ immediately sprung to mind. Historically mistaken for Chardonnay, though it ripens earlier and its wines are a bit less complex (though I don’t mean that in an insulting way), and usually more delicate than its genetic twin Pinot Gris, crushable is right indeed.

Weingut Nägelsförst Pinot Blanc Gutswein 2016, Baden, Germany ($19)

Delicate pear and dewy white blossom aromas. Not intensely aromatic, but with such beauty in its simplicity. On the palate the tart citrus and mineral notes become more pronounced as the acidity lingers on the wine’s finish. Medium bodied at most, with modest alcohol. If you are wondering, this is crushable one.

Weingut Pfeffingen Pinot Blanc Gutswein 2016, Pfalz, Germany ($25)

From limestone rich soils, this has very fine aromas of green pear, lemon pith, apple blossom, and a chalky mineral note. After 4 months of lees contact ageing in stainless steel, it shows a texture reminiscent of Chablis, with a crème fraiche tang. Lingering, layered, but so delicate. One to try if you like French Chardonnay, and a lovely wine in its own way.


Brie Dema has a career rooted in hospitality and has worked with several fantastic Canadian wine and culinary programs including Langdon Hall, Fogo Island Inn and the Elora Mill. She has studied with WSET and CMS, holding the Diploma and the Advanced Pin respectively. Brie played the part of a bumblebee in her dance studio’s production of Peter Pan when she was five. She has a lousy sense of direction but can always find her way to the bottom of a glass of wine. Brie’s favorite role and greatest accomplishment is being a mom to her wonderful daughter Una. She wishes she was a better cook, but is glad she married a chef.

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