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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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  • Kistler Vineyards Bodega Headlands Vineyard Cuvee Elisabeth Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
    Kistler Vineyards Bodega Headlands Vineyard Cuvee Elisabeth Pinot Noir 2006
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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    • Domaine de Courcel Pommard Grand Clos des Epenots Premier Cru 2006  Front Label
      Domaine de Courcel Pommard Grand Clos des Epenots Premier Cru 2006
      Pinot Noir from Pommard, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
      • V91
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    • Auteur Hyland Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006  Front Label
      Auteur Hyland Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006
      Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      • Williams Selyem Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
        Williams Selyem Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2006
        Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
        • W&S94
        • CG93
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      • Kosta Browne Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2006  Front Label
        Kosta Browne Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2006
        Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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        • Marcassin Blue Slide Ridge Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
          Marcassin Blue Slide Ridge Pinot Noir 2006
          Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
          • WS96
          • RP95
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        • Domaine Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St-Jacques 2006 Front Label
          Domaine Fourrier Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St-Jacques 2006
          Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
          • RP95
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        • Laetitia Les Galets Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
          Laetitia Les Galets Pinot Noir 2006
          Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
          • WE94
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        • Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
          Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Pinot Noir 2006
          Pinot Noir from California
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          • Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
            Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2006
            Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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            • Williams Selyem Flax Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
              Williams Selyem Flax Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006
              Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
              • WE92
              • WS91
              • RP90
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            • Aubert UV Vineyard Pinot Noir (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2006 Front Label
              Aubert UV Vineyard Pinot Noir (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2006
              Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
              • RP92
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              238 97
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            • Kosta Browne 4 Barrel Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
              Kosta Browne 4 Barrel Pinot Noir 2006
              Pinot Noir from California
              • WS92
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            • Williams Selyem Ferrington Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
              Williams Selyem Ferrington Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006
              Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
              • CG95
              • WE94
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            • Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Richebourg Grand Cru (scuffed label) 2006 Front Label
              Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Richebourg Grand Cru (scuffed label) 2006
              Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
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              • Castle Rock Monterey Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                Castle Rock Monterey Pinot Noir 2006
                Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
                • CG89
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                17 99
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              • Erath Dundee Hills Estate Selection Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                Erath Dundee Hills Estate Selection Pinot Noir 2006
                Pinot Noir from Dundee Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
                • WS91
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              • Clos Du Val Carneros Estate Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                Clos Du Val Carneros Estate Pinot Noir 2006
                Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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                • Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                  Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir 2006
                  Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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                  • Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                    Williams Selyem Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2006
                    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
                    • W&S90
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                  • Expression 44 degrees Willakia Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                    Expression 44 degrees Willakia Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006
                    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
                    • WS91
                    • RP90
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                  • Cloudline Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                    Cloudline Pinot Noir 2006
                    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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                    • Williams Selyem Central Coast Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                      Williams Selyem Central Coast Pinot Noir 2006
                      Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
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                      • Au Bon Climat Santa Barbara Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                        Au Bon Climat Santa Barbara Pinot Noir 2006
                        Pinot Noir from California
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                        • Rochioli Estate Pinot Noir 2006 Front Label
                          Rochioli Estate Pinot Noir 2006
                          Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
                          • W&S94
                          • WS92
                          • RP91
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