Pinot Blanc

Pinot Blanc is a genetic mutation or clone of Pinot Gris which, in turn, is a clone of Pinot Noir, both members of the Pinot family. Plantings of Pinot Blanc are extensive in Italy, where the grape is known as Pinot Bianco. Many Italian vintners make relatively neutral-tasting, crisp, high-acidity versions intended for early consumption. There are also extensive vineyards in Germany, Austria and Eastern Europe as well as in Argentina and Uruguay. 

Pinot Blanc was imported to America by Paul Masson in the late 1890s. More than half of the Pinot Blanc plantings are in Monterey County, with another quarter of the total split between Napa and Sonoma. 

All Pinot Blanc clones are characteristically high in acid and low in aromatic intensity, making it desirable as a sparkling wine component. Pinot Blanc wines are balanced and can be full-bodied. 

Pinot Blanc pairs well with light dishes or salads that are acidic but not heavily flavored, including baked or sautéed fish or shellfish, sushi, light curry dishes, salads, vegetable dishes with acidic component and with baked or roasted chicken, turkey or pork marinated with lemon or vinegar. 

Cheeses that pair well with Pinot Blanc include Brie, Bucheron, Camembert, Chevre, Dry Jack, sheep-milk Feta, Fontina Val d?Aosta, Gouda, Jarlsberg, Mahon, Monterey Jack, Neufchatel, Ricotta, Pont L'Eveque, Taleggio and such sheep-milk cheese as Pecorino Romano and Pecorino Toscana and Teleme.