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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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  • Sea Smoke Cellars Ten Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Sea Smoke Cellars Ten Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
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  • Evening Land Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Evening Land Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Eola-Amity Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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  • Robert Stemmler Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Robert Stemmler Estate Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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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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  • Robert Mondavi Carneros Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Robert Mondavi Carneros Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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  • The Donum Estate Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    The Donum Estate Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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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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  • Spy Valley Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Spy Valley Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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  • Williams Selyem Burt Williams Morning Dew Ranch Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Burt Williams Morning Dew Ranch Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from California
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  • Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
    • WE90
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  • Clifford Bay Marlborough Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Clifford Bay Marlborough Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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  • Joseph Phelps Freestone Vineyards Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Joseph Phelps Freestone Vineyards Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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    • WE93
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  • Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2010 Front Label
    Etude Carneros Estate Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2010
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
    • WE90
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  • Williams Selyem Hirsch Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Hirsch Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
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  • Domaine Faiveley Gevrey-Chambertin 2010 Front Label
    Domaine Faiveley Gevrey-Chambertin 2010
    Pinot Noir from Gevrey-Chambertin, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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  • Rochioli West Block Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Rochioli West Block Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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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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  • Reata Sonoma Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Reata Sonoma Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
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    • WE92
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  • Siduri Clos Pepe Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Siduri Clos Pepe Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sta. Rita Hills, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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  • Williams Selyem Precious Mountain Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Precious Mountain Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
    • WE98
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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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  • 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
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  • Rochioli Little Hill Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Rochioli Little Hill Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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  • Rochioli Three Corner Pinot Noir 2010 Front Label
    Rochioli Three Corner Pinot Noir 2010
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WS96
    • WE94
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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
    • WW90
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