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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 dominated 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 wine can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice and dried fruit.

Pinot Noir Food Pairings

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 the wine 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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  • Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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  • Williams Selyem Westside Road Neighbors Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Westside Road Neighbors Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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  • Joseph Jewell Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Joseph Jewell Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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  • Roco Marsh Estate Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Roco Marsh Estate Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • W&S91
    • WS90
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  • Chapter 24 Fire + Flood The Fire Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Chapter 24 Fire + Flood The Fire Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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  • Domaine de la Vougeraie Nuits-Saint-Georges Clos de Thorey Monopole Premier Cru 2012 Front Label
    Domaine de la Vougeraie Nuits-Saint-Georges Clos de Thorey Monopole Premier Cru 2012
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
    • RP93
    • WS91
    • W&S91
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  • Giant Steps Gladysdale Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Giant Steps Gladysdale Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia
    • W&S94
    • RP90
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  • Dutton-Goldfield Devil's Gulch Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Dutton-Goldfield Devil's Gulch Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Marin County, North Coast, California
    • WE96
    • CG95
    • W&S93
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  • Chapter 24 Last Chapter Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Chapter 24 Last Chapter Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • W&S96
    • WS93
    • RP90
    3.9 14 Ratings
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  • Marimar Estate Don Miguel Vineyard Cristina Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Marimar Estate Don Miguel Vineyard Cristina Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WS91
    • WE90
    • W&S90
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  • Mischief and Mayhem Chambolle-Musigny 2012 Front Label
    Mischief and Mayhem Chambolle-Musigny 2012
    Pinot Noir from Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
    • W&S91
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  • Villa Maria Cellar Selection Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Villa Maria Cellar Selection Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • W&S92
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  • Evening Land Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Evening Land Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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  • Presqu'ile Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Presqu'ile Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
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  • WillaKenzie Estate Pierre Leon Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    WillaKenzie Estate Pierre Leon Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Yamhill-Carlton District, Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • W&S91
    • WE91
    • WS90
    • RP90
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  • Storm Pinot Noir Vrede 2012 Front Label
    Storm Pinot Noir Vrede 2012
    Pinot Noir from South Africa
    • RP92
    • W&S91
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  • Dutton-Goldfield Freestone Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Dutton-Goldfield Freestone Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • W&S94
    • WE94
    • CG90
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  • Nautilus Marlborough Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Nautilus Marlborough Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • W&S93
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  • Dog Point Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Dog Point Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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  • Carrick Unravelled Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Carrick Unravelled Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Central Otago, New Zealand
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  • Sibling Rivalry Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Sibling Rivalry Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Australia
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  • Ron Rubin Green Valley Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Ron Rubin Green Valley Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • W&S92
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  • Cobb Wines Coastlands Vineyard Old Firs Block Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Cobb Wines Coastlands Vineyard Old Firs Block Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • W&S95
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  • Primarius Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Primarius Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Oregon
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  • Villa Maria Private Bin Pinot Noir 2012 Front Label
    Villa Maria Private Bin Pinot Noir 2012
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • W&S90
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    Currently Unavailable $22.99
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