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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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    Cargasacchi Jalama Vineyard Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
    Pinot Noir from Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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      Landmark Overlook Pinot Noir (375ml half-bottle) 2012
      Pinot Noir from California
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      Solena Estate Grand Cuvee Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
      Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      WillaKenzie Estate Gisele Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
      Pinot Noir from Yamhill-Carlton District, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      Benton Lane Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
      Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      Siduri Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir (375ML) 2012
      Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
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      Schug Carneros Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
      Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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      WillaKenzie Estate Estate Cuvee Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
      Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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        Migration Russian River Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
        Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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        Meiomi Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
        Pinot Noir from California
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          Aberrant Cellars Confero Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
          Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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            Melville Sta. Rita Hills Estate Pinot Noir (375ML) 2012
            Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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              Patz & Hall Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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              Calera Selleck Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Mt. Harlan, Central Coast, California
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              DuMOL Russian River Valley Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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              Adelsheim Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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              Penner-Ash Willamette Valley Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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              Calera de Villiers Vineyard Pinot Noir (375ml half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Mt. Harlan, Central Coast, California
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              Goldeneye Anderson Valley Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
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              Fort Ross Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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              Ron Rubin Green Valley Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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              Robert Sinskey Los Carneros Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
              Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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                Saintsbury Carneros Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
                Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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                  Martin Ray Santa Barbara Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
                  Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
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                    Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2012
                    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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