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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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  • Ramey Russian River Pinot Noir 2016  Front Label
    Ramey Russian River Pinot Noir 2016
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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  • Lemelson Thea's Select Pinot Noir 2016  Front Label
    Lemelson Thea's Select Pinot Noir 2016
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    • WS91
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  • Saintsbury Sundawg Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
    Saintsbury Sundawg Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016
    Pinot Noir from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    • Two Paddocks The Last Chance Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
      Two Paddocks The Last Chance Pinot Noir 2016
      Pinot Noir from Central Otago, New Zealand
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      • RP91
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    • FEL Savoy Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
      FEL Savoy Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016
      Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
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      • TP95
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    • Burn Cottage Pinot Noir 2016  Front Label
      Burn Cottage Pinot Noir 2016
      Pinot Noir from Central Otago, New Zealand
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      • WW94
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    • Foxen John Sebastiano Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
      Foxen John Sebastiano Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016
      Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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      • V92
      • RP91
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    • Joseph Drouhin Gevrey-Chambertin 2016 Front Label
      Joseph Drouhin Gevrey-Chambertin 2016
      Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
      • JS91
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    • Domaine de la Pousse d'Or Volnay En Caillerets Premier Cru 2016 Front Label
      Domaine de la Pousse d'Or Volnay En Caillerets Premier Cru 2016
      Pinot Noir from Volnay, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
      • BH91
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    • J. Christopher J.J Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2016  Front Label
      J. Christopher J.J Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2016
      Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      • Wrath Swan 828 Pinot Noir 2016  Front Label
        Wrath Swan 828 Pinot Noir 2016
        Pinot Noir from Monterey, Central Coast, California
        • JD93
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      • Domaine Denis Bachelet Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
        Domaine Denis Bachelet Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2016
        Pinot Noir from Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
        • RP91
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      • Occidental Freestone-Occidental Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
        Occidental Freestone-Occidental Pinot Noir 2016
        Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
        • JD94
        • RP92
        • D91
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      • Louis Jadot Nuits-St-Georges Les Boudots Premier Cru Domaine Gagey 2016 Front Label
        Louis Jadot Nuits-St-Georges Les Boudots Premier Cru Domaine Gagey 2016
        Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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        • WS92
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      • Rex Hill Jacob Hart Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016  Front Label
        Rex Hill Jacob Hart Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016
        Pinot Noir from Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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        • WE92
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      • Louis Latour Nuits-St-Georges 2016  Front Label
        Louis Latour Nuits-St-Georges 2016
        Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
        • JS92
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      • Domaine Denis Bachelet Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2016 Front Label
        Domaine Denis Bachelet Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2016
        Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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      • Domaine Denis Bachelet Gevrey-Chambertin Les Corbeaux Premier Cru Vieilles Vignes 2016 Front Label
        Domaine Denis Bachelet Gevrey-Chambertin Les Corbeaux Premier Cru Vieilles Vignes 2016
        Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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        • RP94
        • BH93
        • D92
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      • Domaine Denis Bachelet Cote de Nuits Villages 2016 Front Label
        Domaine Denis Bachelet Cote de Nuits Villages 2016
        Pinot Noir from Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
        • RP92
        • BH91
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      • Beckon Pinot Noir Bien Nacido Vineyard 2016 Front Label
        Beckon Pinot Noir Bien Nacido Vineyard 2016
        Pinot Noir from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
        • WE92
        • W&S92
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      • Brewer-Clifton Machado Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
        Brewer-Clifton Machado Pinot Noir 2016
        Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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        • WE95
        • WS93
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      • Domaine Denis Bachelet Gevrey-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes 2016 Front Label
        Domaine Denis Bachelet Gevrey-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes 2016
        Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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      • Lioco Saveria Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
        Lioco Saveria Pinot Noir 2016
        Pinot Noir from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
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        • Lignier-Michelot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2016 Front Label
          Lignier-Michelot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2016
          Pinot Noir from Morey-St-Denis, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
          • RP97
          • BH93
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        • DuMOL Wester Reach Pinot Noir 2016 Front Label
          DuMOL Wester Reach Pinot Noir 2016
          Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
          • WS93
          • JD92
          • RP92
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