Text Size:-+
10.24.2012

The Essence of Wine: Pears

vinography_essence_pears.jpg

Image © 2012 Leigh Beisch

Which is a better testament to its glory? That the oldest languages we know all have a word for "pear?" Or that its growing patterns spread like alluvial fans along the world's most ancient trade routes? We've apparently been charmed by this awkwardly bulbous fruit since prehistoric times, when its dangling, fulsome ripeness must have been a welcome gift in the wilderness. Time and the experimental flights of our own fancy have produced thousands of varieties, with hues from purple to white, and with characters that are equally diverse. But from the translucent-skinned, velvety Bartlett, to the crisp and floral Asian pear, a thread of flavor unites its many incarnations. The pear's unique combination of slightly woody skin and sweet juicy flesh make for complex organoleptics that are frequently evoked in wine. Pears are a signature flavor across many of the world's whites, but especially Pinot Gris, Riesling, Friulano, Malvasia, Grüner Veltliner, Pinot Blanc, Furmint, and Chenin Blanc. Though pears, like apples have long been made into their own elixirs, they never appear quite so sublime as they do wafting out of a glass of white wine.

Ruinart "Dom Ruinart" Blanc de Blancs Champagne, France
Angoves "Vineyard Select" Riesling, Clare Valley, South Australia
Marc Kreydenweiss "Clos Rebberg" Pinot Gris, Alsace, France
Smith Madrone Riesling, Spring Mountain District, Napa, California, USA
Palmina Wines "Honea Vineyard" Tocai Friulano, Santa Ynez Valley, California, USA
Giaconda "Aeolia" Roussanne, Beechworth, Victoria, Australia
Dr. Loosen Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Spatlese, Mosel, Germany
King Estate Pinot Gris, Oregon, USA
Bastianich "Adriatico" Friulano, Colli Orientali del Friuli, Italy
Weingut Nigl "Privat - Pellingen Erste Lage" Grüner Veltliner, Kremstal, Niederösterreich, Austria
Kiralyudvar "Sec" Dry Furmint, Tokaj, Hungary
Kogl M.D. Albus "Magna Domenica" White Wine, Podravje, Slovenia
Quinta do Alqueve Fernão Pires, Ribetejano, Portugal
Cantina Terlano "Vorberg Reserva" Pinot Bianco, Alto Adige, Italy
Ken Forrester Wines "The FMC" Chenin Blanc


This is part of an ongoing series of original images and prose called The Essence of Wine

Buy My Book!

small_final_covershot_dropshadow.jpg A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.

Follow Me On:

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Instagram Delectable Flipboard

Most Recent Entries

Vinography Images: Cold Snap Cincinnati Here I Come! Happy Thanksgiving from Vinography Vinography Unboxed: Week of November 23, 2014 Putting a Cork in Your Thanksgiving Wine Anxiety Plumbing the Depths of Portugal: A Tasting Journey Vinography Images: Rain at Last The Mysterious Art of Selling Direct Critical Consolidation in Wine What Has California Got Against Wineries?

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Masuizumi Junmai Daiginjo, Toyama Prefecture Wine.Com Gives Retailers (and Consumers) the Finger 1961 Hospices de Beaune Emile Chandesais, Burgundy Wine Over Time The Better Half of My Palate 1999 Királyudvar "Lapis" Tokaji Furmint, Hungary What's Allowed in Your Wine and Winemaking Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Appreciating Wine in Context The Soul vs. The Market 1989 Fiorano Botte 48 Semillion,Italy

Archives by Month

 

Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud Adventures on the Wine Route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson The World's Greatest Wine Estates by Robert M. Parker, Jr.