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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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  • Domaine de Bellene Beaune Cuvee du Cinquantenaire Premier Cru 2017  Front Label
    Domaine de Bellene Beaune Cuvee du Cinquantenaire Premier Cru 2017
    Pinot Noir from Beaune, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Domaine Faiveley Corton Clos des Cortons Faiveley Grand Cru 2014
    Pinot Noir from Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Lucien Le Moine Nuits-St-Georges Les Vaucrains Premier Cru 2013 Front Label
    Lucien Le Moine Nuits-St-Georges Les Vaucrains Premier Cru 2013
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Olivier Bernstein Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru 2010 Front Label
    Olivier Bernstein Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru 2010
    Pinot Noir from Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Bouchard Pere & Fils Nuits-St-Georges Les Cailles Premier Cru 2016 Front Label
    Bouchard Pere & Fils Nuits-St-Georges Les Cailles Premier Cru 2016
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
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  • Domaine Jean Grivot Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 2016 Front Label
    Domaine Jean Grivot Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 2016
    Pinot Noir from Vougeot, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Lignier-Michelot Morey-St-Denis Aux Charmes Premier Cru 2016 Front Label
    Lignier-Michelot Morey-St-Denis Aux Charmes Premier Cru 2016
    Pinot Noir from Morey-St-Denis, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Ronciere Premier  Cru 2015 Front Label
    Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Ronciere Premier Cru 2015
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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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
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    Bouchard Pere & Fils Beaune Greves Premier Cru Vigne de l'Enfant Jesus 2017
    Pinot Noir from Beaune, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Lignier-Michelot Gevrey-Chambertin Cuvee Bertin 2016 Front Label
    Lignier-Michelot Gevrey-Chambertin Cuvee Bertin 2016
    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Albert Bichot Fixin Clos de la Perriere Premier Cru Monopole 2017
    Pinot Noir from Fixin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Lignier-Michelot Morey-St-Denis En la Rue de Vergy 2016
    Pinot Noir from Morey-St-Denis, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Domaine A.F. Gros Beaune Les Boucherottes Premier Cru 2016
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  • Rapet Pere & Fils Aloxe-Corton 2015 Front Label
    Rapet Pere & Fils Aloxe-Corton 2015
    Pinot Noir from Aloxe-Corton, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Aux Boudots Premier Cru 2016 Front Label
    Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Aux Boudots Premier Cru 2016
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Michel Magnien Chambolle-Musigny les Fremieres 2017  Front Label
    Michel Magnien Chambolle-Musigny les Fremieres 2017
    Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Domaine Jean Grivot Nuits-St-Georges Aux Boudots Premier Cru 2017
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    Domaine A.F. Gros Chambolle-Musigny 2016
    Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Pierre Gelin Fixin Premier Cru Clos Napoleon 2015
    Pinot Noir from Fixin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Domaine de l'Arlot Nuits-St-Georges Clos des Forets St Georges Premier Cru Monopole 2017
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Domaine Tollot-Beaut Beaune Greves Premier Cru 2017
    Pinot Noir from Beaune, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Louis Jadot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru 2016 Front Label
    Louis Jadot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru 2016
    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    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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  • Bouchard Pere & Fils Gevrey-Chambertin 2017  Front Label
    Bouchard Pere & Fils Gevrey-Chambertin 2017
    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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