Sauvignon Blanc Vs Pinot Grigio: 2022 Ultimate Comparison

Sauvignon Blanc Vs Pinot Grigio

It is not enough to know that Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio are two of the most famous white wines.

This reality could pose a difficulty in differentiating them. The two wines are not just white wines, they are both dry and crisp. How then do you tell the difference between Sauvignon Blanc and the Pinot Grigio? Do they even differ at all?

The main difference between Sauvignon Blanc Vs Pinot Grigio is their scent. The first thing you notice when you open your wine is the scent that welcomes you, so this is a good way to differentiate both wines.

This could call for more concern because different wines have meals they are best paired with, but how do you know which meal to pair each wine with if you don’t even know their difference? No one likes a bad meal and I bet you don’t, not even your stomach.

The purpose of this article is to help you know the differences and similarities between these two tastes of freshness.

Sauvignon Blanc: The Grapes

Sauvignon Blanc is made from a green-colored grape that is held to originate from Loir Valley and the Bordeaux region of France, though it has an origin traceable to Savanage.

It gets its name from the French word Sauvage, meaning ‘wild’ (because it is believed to have fragrances similar to the popular wild grapevines), and Blanc, meaning ‘White’. This goes to satisfy the reason its end-product is called ‘White Wine’.

 white wine grapes Sauvignon blanc on the vine
Image: @JJFarquitectos via Twenty20

The grape which originated in Western France is now popularly grown in many other parts of the world where wine is also produced. These countries include New Zealand and South Africa (places where it occurred after France), with Australia, South Africa, Chile, and the USA following later.

Sauvignon Blanc which is also called different names depending on the region is called a variety because its taste is also affected by the origin where it is grown.

Sauvignon Blanc: The Wine

Sauvignon is popularly known and appreciated for its dry, crispy, and fresh taste. More specifically, it is unique is known for its taste like herbs. This explains why it’s called ‘grassy’ in some regions.

The flavor of Sauv Blanc as it is also called depends on the climate of the region where it is produced. In regions where the temperature is quite cool, Sauvignon Blanc has a more pronounced acidity and grassy flavors.

In warmer temperatures, however, it tastes like tropic fruits wine with a faint flavor because of its indifferent acidity. This is due to the condition where the grape loses its scent as a result of its excessive ripeness caused by heat.

Sauv Blancs fragrance is one thing that gets its fans glued to it. It is also very crispy because of its acidity. It is the most popular wine in the world.

Pinot Grigio: The Grape

Pinot Grigio is the second most popular wine in America. Unlike Sauvignon, Pinot Gris as it’s called in French is bluish-gray. It is important to note that the color of Pinot differs and can also occur as bluish pink.

Although it also originates from France, it is not from the Bordeaux region, but Burgundy. It is now produced in more regions like Germany and Switzerland.

@MargJohnsonVA via Twenty20

Pinot Grigio: The Wine

Pinot Grigio is a light-bodied white wine that is crisp and fresh. It has moderate acidity, and its flavor also differs compared to the region where it’s produced. Pinot Grigio tastes like lemon and green apples.

It has more varieties but the most common is Italian and Alsatian styles. The difference between these two styles is the length of time the grape uses on the vine before it is harvested for processing.

The Italian Pinot Grigio is harvested earlier compared to the Alsatian-style where the grapes are left on the vine for a longer period. The implication is that the level of acidity of both wines will differ and their taste. The Pinot Grigio made using the Alsatian style has a more fruity taste.

This is because, the longer the grape uses on the vine, the lowers the level of acidity.

Sauvignon Blanc Vs Pinot Grigio: The Differences

Two things that differentiate wines easier are their smell and their taste. In the case of both wines, their scent is their major difference as we said earlier. We’ll be making a list of factors that tell the differences between Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio.

1. The Grapes

Sauvignon blanc grapes are usually green-skinned while Pinot Grigio grapes are often bluish-gray. Both grapes also grow in different regions.

2. Level of Acidity

The acid content of both wines varies because of the difference in the time before which they are harvested. This goes to affect their taste and crispiness. Sauvignon Blancs have higher acid content compared to Pinot Grigio.

3. The Scent

The acid content of every wine determines its taste and smell. Sauvignon Blancs are highly acidic and so they have a stronger smell. Pinot Grigio on the other hand has a lighter smell because its level of acidity is quite fair.

Sauvignon Blanc Vs Pinot Grigio
Image: @kennethmla0102 via Twenty20

4. The Flavor

The variation in the amount of acid present in Sauvignon Blancs and Pinot Grigio also affects their flavor. While Sauvignon Blancs is more crispy and has a grass-like taste like herbs, Pinot Grigio is relatively sweeter and tastes like fruits such as green apples and mangoes.

5. Production Style

Pinot Grigio is produced in different styles; examples are the Italian and Alsatian styles. The difference between the two styles is in the length of time the grapes use on the vine before they are harvested.

Sauvignon Blancs in contrast do not have varieties because there’s only one style in which the harvested grapes are produced.

For the production process, sauvignon blanc is fermented at a lower temperature compared to Pinot Grigio.

6. Dryness  Of  The Wine

Both wines are famous for their dryness, but they don’t taste exactly alike. Their dryness depends on the wine it is and the climate of the environment where they are produced, but Sauv Blancs are drier than Pinot Grigio.

7. Environment

It is important to note that while Sauvignon Blanc can thrive in both warm and cool climates, Pinot Grigio grows better in cool climates.

Also, it has been established that the taste of both wines varies from place to place, the reason being that the climatic condition of different places has implications on their tastes.

Pinot Grigio is produced in more places compared to Sauvignon Blanc. The implication of this is that they have more varieties from place to place.

8. Food Match

Now that you can tell what each wine tastes like, you can decide what dishes you want to pair each wine with based on personal choice. From experience, however, it is best to pair wines with strong and crispier tastes with lighter dishes.

We however suggest that you have your Sauvignon Blanc with Desserts, while you enjoy your Pasta with Pinot Grigio.

TitleSauvignon BlancPinot Grigio
OriginBordeaux, FranceBurgundy, France
The grapeGreen-SkinnedBluish gray, Bluish pink
Acid contentMore acidicNeutral
Flavor DrynessGrass-like   DrierFruity Dry
Production StyleOnly one styleMore Styles- Italian, Alsatian
Environment  Food MatchWarm and cool climates Fewer regions- Fewer taste varieties   Lighter meals- Vegetables, DessertsCool climates More regions- More taste varieties     Pasta, Avocado, Salad  

Sauvignon Blanc Vs Pinot Grigio: The Similarities

Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio have pronounced differences but share obvious similarities. The similarities are on the following basis.

1. Type Of Wine

Both wines are white. This is one obvious thing they share in common.

2. Nature Of Wine

Both wines are dry, fresh, and crispy. Although, one of the wines is drier and crisper than the other.

3. Variation In Taste

Both wines have flavors that vary depending on the regions where they are produced.

[READ NEXT] Does Wine Go Bad? Here’s how to tell.

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