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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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  • Clos de la Tech Domaine Lois Louise Twisty Ridge Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Clos de la Tech Domaine Lois Louise Twisty Ridge Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
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  • Reata Sonoma Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Reata Sonoma Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
    • TP93
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  • Westrey Reserve Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Westrey Reserve Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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  • Clos de la Tech Santa Cruz Mountains Estates Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Clos de la Tech Santa Cruz Mountains Estates Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
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  • Sea Smoke Cellars Ten Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Sea Smoke Cellars Ten Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
    • WE93
    • WS91
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  • Flying Goat Cellars Rio Vista Vineyard Clone 2A Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Flying Goat Cellars Rio Vista Vineyard Clone 2A Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    • WE91
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  • Fort Ross Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Fort Ross Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • WE93
    • CG91
    • JS91
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  • Clifford Bay Marlborough Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Clifford Bay Marlborough Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • WS89
    • WE88
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  • Clos de la Tech Domaine Valeta Sunny Slope Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Clos de la Tech Domaine Valeta Sunny Slope Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
    • WE95
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  • Au Bon Climat Bien Nacido Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 Front Bottle Shot
    Au Bon Climat Bien Nacido Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
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  • Sequana Dutton Ranch Green Valley Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Sequana Dutton Ranch Green Valley Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WE92
    • WS92
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  • Urban Legend Cellars Carneros Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Urban Legend Cellars Carneros Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
    • WE90
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  • Marimar Estate Don Miguel Vineyard La Masia Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Marimar Estate Don Miguel Vineyard La Masia Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WE92
    • RP90
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  • Flowers Sea View Ridge Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Flowers Sea View Ridge Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
    • WE98
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  • Villa Maria Cellar Selection Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Villa Maria Cellar Selection Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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  • Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Domaine Serene Evenstad Reserve Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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  • Belle Glos Taylor Lane Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Belle Glos Taylor Lane Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
    • WS92
    • WE90
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  • The Crossings Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    The Crossings Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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  • Walt La Brisa Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Walt La Brisa Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
    • WE93
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  • Villa Maria Private Bin Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Villa Maria Private Bin Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
    • WE89
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  • Ritual Casablanca Valley Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Ritual Casablanca Valley Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Chile
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  • Dashwood Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Dashwood Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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  • Melville Estate Verna's Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Melville Estate Verna's Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    • WE93
    • RP91
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  • Chandon California Carneros Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Chandon California Carneros Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
    • W&S92
    • WE90
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  • Cuvaison Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Cuvaison Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
    • WE90
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