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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 Comte Georges de Vogue Musigny Vieilles Vignes 2001  Front Label
    Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Musigny Vieilles Vignes 2001
    Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
    • RP96
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  • Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Bonnes Mares 2002  Front Label
    Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Bonnes Mares 2002
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
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  • Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Bonnes Mares 2001  Front Label
    Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Bonnes Mares 2001
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
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    • Domaine Michel Gaunoux Corton Renardes Grand Cru 2002  Front Label
      Domaine Michel Gaunoux Corton Renardes Grand Cru 2002
      Pinot Noir from Aloxe-Corton, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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      • Calera de Villiers Vineyard Pinot Noir 2009 Front Label
        Calera de Villiers Vineyard Pinot Noir 2009
        Pinot Noir from Mt. Harlan, Central Coast, California
        • RP96
        • WW94
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      • Marcassin Three Sisters Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
        Marcassin Three Sisters Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010
        Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
        • WS96
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      • Domaine Perrot-Minot Gevrey-Chambertin 2002  Front Label
        Domaine Perrot-Minot Gevrey-Chambertin 2002
        Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
        • WS91
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      • Cadre The Architects Pinot Noir 2014 Front Label
        Cadre The Architects Pinot Noir 2014
        Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
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        • Domaine Perrot-Minot Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux Monts Premier Cru 2002  Front Label
          Domaine Perrot-Minot Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux Monts Premier Cru 2002
          Pinot Noir from Vosne-Romanee, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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          • Domaine & Selection (Laurent Ponsot) Charmes Chamertin Grand Cru (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2010  Front Label
            Domaine & Selection (Laurent Ponsot) Charmes Chamertin Grand Cru (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2010
            Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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            • Domaine & Selection (Laurent Ponsot) Charmes Chamertin Grand Cru 2010  Front Label
              Domaine & Selection (Laurent Ponsot) Charmes Chamertin Grand Cru 2010
              Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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              • Marcassin Blue Slide Ridge Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
                Marcassin Blue Slide Ridge Pinot Noir 2010
                Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
                • RP94
                • WS93
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              • Domaine Ponsot Clos de Vougeot  Vieilles Vignes (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2009  Front Label
                Domaine Ponsot Clos de Vougeot Vieilles Vignes (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2009
                Pinot Noir from Vougeot, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
                • RP95
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              • Domaine de la Pousse d'Or Volnay Clos de la Bousse d'Or Premier Cru (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2006  Front Label
                Domaine de la Pousse d'Or Volnay Clos de la Bousse d'Or Premier Cru (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2006
                Pinot Noir from Volnay, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                • Domaine Perrot-Minot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2008  Front Label
                  Domaine Perrot-Minot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2008
                  Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
                  • RP92
                  • WS92
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                • Domaine Perrot-Minot Chapelle-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru 2008  Front Label
                  Domaine Perrot-Minot Chapelle-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru 2008
                  Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                  • Domaine Perrot-Minot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2009 Front Label
                    Domaine Perrot-Minot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2009
                    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                    • V91
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                  • Domaine Perrot-Minot Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2008 Front Label
                    Domaine Perrot-Minot Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2008
                    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                    • Domaine Ponsot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru 2009 Front Label
                      Domaine Ponsot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru 2009
                      Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                      • Domaine Perrot-Minot Mazoyeres-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru 2008  Front Label
                        Domaine Perrot-Minot Mazoyeres-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru 2008
                        Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                        • Domaine Perrot-Minot Nuits-Saint-Georges La Richemone Premier Cru Cuvee Ultra 2008  Front Label
                          Domaine Perrot-Minot Nuits-Saint-Georges La Richemone Premier Cru Cuvee Ultra 2008
                          Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                          • Domaine Perrot-Minot Morey-St-Denis La Riotte Premier Cru (scuffed labels) 2009  Front Label
                            Domaine Perrot-Minot Morey-St-Denis La Riotte Premier Cru (scuffed labels) 2009
                            Pinot Noir from Morey-St-Denis, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                            • Domaine Perrot-Minot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru (scuffed label) 2009 Front Label
                              Domaine Perrot-Minot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru (scuffed label) 2009
                              Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                              • Dugat-Py Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru 2009 Front Label
                                Dugat-Py Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru 2009
                                Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
                                • RP97
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                              • Domaine Alain Burguet Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru les Champeaux 2010  Front Label
                                Domaine Alain Burguet Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru les Champeaux 2010
                                Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
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