What’s the difference between Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris?

Ask Dr Vinny

Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, but you can call me Vinny. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the fine points of etiquette to the science of winemaking. And don't worry, I'm no wine snob—you can also ask me those "dumb questions" you're too embarrased to ask your wine geek friends! I hope you find my answers educational, empowering and even amusing. And don't forget to check out my most asked questions and my full archives for all my Q&A classics.

Dear Dr. Vinny,

What’s the difference between Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris?

—Craig, Sydney, Australia

Dear Craig,

Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris are two different names for the same white wine grape. But as with the similar Syrah/Shiraz scenario, using one term over another can offer some hints to either the region in which the wine was made or the wine’s style.

Pinot Grigio is the Italian name, and the wines tend to be very light-bodied and crisp. Pinot Gris is the French name, and versions from Alsace can be a bit richer, plumper and spicier. They can also be made in sweeter, dessert styles, with honeyed notes.

—Dr. Vinny

Ask Dr. Vinny White Wines Pinot Gris / Pinot Grigio France Italy

More In Dr. Vinny

Will my wines get too cold in the garage?

Wine Spectator's expert Dr. Vinny covers the pitfalls of storing wine in the garage, …

Jan 11, 2021

Dr. Vinny's 25 Top Answers to 'What's the Difference Between …?'

Wine Spectator's expert Dr. Vinny offers disambiguations for wine topics far and wide.

Jan 4, 2021

Dr. Vinny's Most Interesting Questions of 2020

Wine Spectator's resident wine expert, Dr. Vinny, revisits the most thoughtful questions …

Dec 31, 2020

Dr. Vinny Answers Your Pandemic Questions (About Wine)

Wine Spectator's resident wine expert, Dr. Vinny, revisits all your questions about wine …

Dec 28, 2020

Why is the name “Sauvignon” attached to both red Cabernet Sauvignon and white Sauvignon Blanc?

Wine Spectator's expert Dr. Vinny explains the relationship between Cabernet Sauvignon and …

Dec 21, 2020

Is it true that wines only improve for about five years after bottling?

Wine Spectator's expert Dr. Vinny explains that improvement and ageability are a matter of …

Dec 14, 2020