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The Pinot Gris is the most comprehensible link between Pinot Noir and Pinot Blanc within the large Pinot family. It has been cultivated in Austria since the 14th Century.

probably France

Mutation of the variety Blauburgunder

315.21 ha; 0.7%

White wine grape variety


Origin

Pinot Gris was probably brought from Burgundy to Austria by Cistercian monks back in the 13th or 14th century – which is why the variety was once referred to as “Grauer Mönch” (grey monk).
he grape made its way to Germany from Burgundy or the Champagne region and in 1711, it was found in a vineyard – which no longer exists – by the tradesman Johann Seger Ruland from Speyer (Palatinate). From here, the variety spread, referred to as “Ruländer”.

Vineyard area

This variety is mostly found in northern Burgenland and Steiermark. This variety’s total area under vine decreased continuously between 1999 and 2020.

A picture shows grapes of the grape variety Grauburgunder.

Important ampelographic features

© Austrian Wine / Oberleithner

Important ampelographic features

Leaf

pentagonal, three to five lobes, slightly overlapping petiole

Grape cluster

small, densely berried, cylindrical, occasionally shouldered; berries are small, round, greyish-red in colour and thin-skinned.
Before the grapes ripen, it is difficult to differentiate this variety from Pinot Noir and Pinot Blanc. It can only be differentiated by the colour of the grapes and the time of ripening.

Ripening

Ripening

very early
early
early to middle
middle
middle to late
late
very late

Significance & conditions

This variety achieves a high natural sugar content and is, therefore, well-suited for Spätlese and Auslese wines.
These vines are demanding and prefer warm, hillside vineyards with a nutrient-rich soil, where they can root deeply and enjoy a good supply of water.

 

Area under vine in Austria
(as a proportion of the variety’s total area)

Click on the wine origin in the list for a breakdown into more specific regions of origin.

Total area in Austria:

The Leithaberg and Neusiedlersee wine-growing regions overlap by almost 160 ha (Rieds Hausberg and Neuberg), according to the Austrian Wine Law. This means that the listed area under vine in Burgenland is 160 ha less than the actual total area across all wine-growing regions in Burgenland.

A picture shows a hand holding a glass of white wine.

Characteristics of the wine

© Austrian Wine / Blickwerk Fotografie

Characteristics of the wine

Yields mild Qualitätswein and Prädikatswein with a very dependable, delicate bouquet. A very early harvest produces light and zesty wines. As it is susceptible to botrytis – which develops to noble rot when it appears later in the season – Pinot Gris often exhibits a strong aroma with a characteristic note of honey attributed to the botrytis. High quality can be achieved as a result of ageing.

 

Source varietal specifications: Höhere Bundeslehranstalt und Bundesamt für Wein- und Obstbau (Federal College and Federal Office for Viticulture, Oenology and Fruit Growing) in Klosterneuburg, “Austria’s Qualitätswein grape varieties and their clones“ („Österreichische Qualitätsweinrebsorten und deren Klone“), 2nd, reviewed edition, September 2015

Source area under vine: Calculation by Austrian Wine based on data from BML/IACS (as at 28 June 2023). Moving annual total (MAT) from June 2022 to June 2023.

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