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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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  • Capiaux Cellars Pisoni Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
    Capiaux Cellars Pisoni Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
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  • Siduri Rosella's Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
    Siduri Rosella's Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
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  • Burn Cottage Moonlight Race Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
    Burn Cottage Moonlight Race Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Central Otago, New Zealand
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    • WS91
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  • Kerr Cellars Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2015  Front Label
    Kerr Cellars Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2015
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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    • Maggy Hawk Jolie Anderson Valley Pinot Noir 2015  Front Label
      Maggy Hawk Jolie Anderson Valley Pinot Noir 2015
      Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
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      • Jean-Marc Vincent Santenay Le Passetemps Premier Cru 2015  Front Label
        Jean-Marc Vincent Santenay Le Passetemps Premier Cru 2015
        Pinot Noir from Santenay, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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        • Williams Selyem Calegari Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Williams Selyem Calegari Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP92
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        • Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Aux Boudots Premier Cru 2015 Front Label
          Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Aux Boudots Premier Cru 2015
          Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
          • WS94
          • RP94
          • BH92
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        • Patz & Hall Chenoweth Ranch Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Patz & Hall Chenoweth Ranch Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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          • RP93
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        • Ojai Bien Nacido Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Ojai Bien Nacido Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
          • V93
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        • Domaine Meo-Camuzet Corton Les Perrieres Grand Cru 2015 Front Label
          Domaine Meo-Camuzet Corton Les Perrieres Grand Cru 2015
          Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
          • BH94
          • V94
          • RP93
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        • Williams Selyem Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Williams Selyem Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • RP96
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        • Olivier Bernstein Gevrey-Chambertin Les Cazetiers Premier Cru (scuffed labels) 2015 Front Label
          Olivier Bernstein Gevrey-Chambertin Les Cazetiers Premier Cru (scuffed labels) 2015
          Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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        • Mount Eden Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Mount Eden Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
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          • WW94
          • RP93
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        • Domaine Meo-Camuzet Echezeaux Grand Cru 2015 Front Label
          Domaine Meo-Camuzet Echezeaux Grand Cru 2015
          Pinot Noir from Flagey-Echezeaux, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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          • V95
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        • St. Innocent Shea Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          St. Innocent Shea Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Yamhill-Carlton District, Willamette Valley, Oregon
          • W&S93
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        • Olivier Bernstein Clos Vougeot Grand Cru 2015 Front Label
          Olivier Bernstein Clos Vougeot Grand Cru 2015
          Pinot Noir from Vougeot, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
          • WS96
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        • Aubert UV-SL Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Aubert UV-SL Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
          • JS97
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        • Williams Selyem Weir Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Williams Selyem Weir Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Yorkville Highlands, Mendocino, California
          • WE93
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        • Hartford Court Arrendell Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
          Hartford Court Arrendell Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
          Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • V94
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        • Louis Latour Chambolle-Musigny 2015 Front Label
          Louis Latour Chambolle-Musigny 2015
          Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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          • Rivers-Marie Silver Eagle Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
            Rivers-Marie Silver Eagle Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
            Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
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            • Hartford Court Hailey's Block Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
              Hartford Court Hailey's Block Pinot Noir 2015
              Pinot Noir from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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              • Hartford Court Velvet Sisters Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
                Hartford Court Velvet Sisters Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015
                Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
                • V91
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              • Hartford Court MacLean's Block Pinot Noir 2015 Front Label
                Hartford Court MacLean's Block Pinot Noir 2015
                Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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