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Pinot Noir

Learn about Pinot Noir — taste profile, popular regions and more ...

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One of the most finicky yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is a labor of love for many. However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. In fact, it is the only red variety permitted in Burgundy. Highly reflective of its terroir, Pinot Noir prefers calcareous soils and a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality and demands a lot of attention in the vineyard and winery. It retains even more glory as an important component of Champagne as well as on its own in France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions. This sensational grape enjoys immense international success, most notably growing in Oregon, California and New Zealand with smaller amounts in Chile, Germany (as Spätburgunder) and Italy (as Pinot Nero).

Tasting Notes for Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a dry red wine, typically diominated by red fruit—strawberry, raspberry and cherry with some heftier styles showing black plum and more delicate styles of Pinot giving citrus qualities. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and a lively acidity. With age Pinot Noir can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice and dried fruit.

Perfect Food Pairings for Pinot Noir

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of salmon or texture of tuna but its mild mannered tannins give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry: chicken, quail and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, Pinot noir has proven it isn’t afraid of beef. California examples work splendidly well with barbecue and Pinot Noir is also vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secrets for Pinot Noir

For administrative purposes, the region of Beaujolais is often included in Burgundy. But it is extremely different in terms of topography, soil and climate, and the important red grape here is ultimately Gamay, not Pinot noir. Truth be told, there is a tiny amount of Gamay sprinkled around the outlying parts of Burgundy (mainly in Maconnais) but it isn’t allowed with any great significance and certainly not in any Village or Cru level wines. So "red Burgundy" still necessarily refers to Pinot noir.

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    Alex Gambal Chambolle-Musigny 2015
    Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Wayfarer Wayfarer Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Fort Ross-Seaview, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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    Alex Gambal Volnay 2015
    Pinot Noir from Volnay, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Alex Gambal Gevrey-Chambertin 2015
    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Red Car Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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    Patz & Hall Chenoweth Ranch Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Hartford Court Arrendell Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Roco The Stalker Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Erath Leland Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Lemelson Thea's Select Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    • WS91
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    St. Innocent Freedom Hill Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Eola-Amity Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • JS92
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    Talley Stone Corral Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Edna Valley, Central Coast, California
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    Kerr Cellars Walala Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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      Brittan Basalt Block Pinot Noir 2015
      Pinot Noir from McMinnville, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      Dutton-Goldfield Emerald Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
      Pinot Noir from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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      Anthill Farms Campbell Ranch Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
      Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
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      Resonance Decouverte Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
      Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      The Withers Charles Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
      Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
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      Jean-Claude Boisset Auxey-Duresses Premier Cru Climat Du Val 2015
      Pinot Noir from Auxey-Duresses, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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        Zena Crown Vineyard Slope Pinot Noir 2015
        Pinot Noir from Eola-Amity Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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        Raptor Ridge Shea Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
        Pinot Noir from Yamhill-Carlton District, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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        Schug Carneros Estate Grown Pinot Noir 2015
        Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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          Two Sisters Lindsay's Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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          Evesham Wood Le Puits Sec Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Eola-Amity Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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            Sojourn Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2015
            Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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