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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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  • King Estate Reserve Pinot Noir 1996 Front Label
    King Estate Reserve Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • WS88
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  • Flowers Camp Meeting Ridge Pinot Noir 1996 Front Label
    Flowers Camp Meeting Ridge Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
    • WS92
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  • Domaine de la Romanee-Conti La Tache Grand Cru 1996 Front Label
    Domaine de la Romanee-Conti La Tache Grand Cru 1996
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
    • WS96
    • RP96
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  • Erath Vintage Select Pinot Noir 1996 Front Label
    Erath Vintage Select Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • WS86
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  • Cambria Julia's Vineyard Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from Central Coast, California
    • WS87
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  • Louis Jadot Clos Saint-Denis 1996 Front Label
    Louis Jadot Clos Saint-Denis 1996
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
    • WS93
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  • Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue Bonnes Mares 1996
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
    • WS90
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    Currently Unavailable $204.99
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  • Louis Jadot Domaine des Heritiers Corton Pougets Grand Cru 1996 Front Label
    Louis Jadot Domaine des Heritiers Corton Pougets Grand Cru 1996
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
    • WS94
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  • Archery Summit Premier Cuvee Pinot Noir (1.5L) 1996
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • WS87
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    Currently Unavailable $93.99
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  • Erath Pinot Noir Reserve 1996 Front Label
    Erath Pinot Noir Reserve 1996
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • WS88
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  • Joseph Drouhin Grand Echezeaux 1996 Front Label
    Joseph Drouhin Grand Echezeaux 1996
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
    • WS87
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  • Joseph Drouhin Bonnes-Mares 1996 Front Label
    Joseph Drouhin Bonnes-Mares 1996
    Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
    • WS90
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  • Robert Arnoux Vosne Romanee Les Suchots 1996 Front Label
    Robert Arnoux Vosne Romanee Les Suchots 1996
    Pinot Noir from Vosne-Romanee, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
    • RP93
    • WS90
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  • Chateau de la Tour Clos Vougeot Grand Cru 1996 Front Label
    Chateau de la Tour Clos Vougeot Grand Cru 1996
    Pinot Noir from Vougeot, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
    • WS93
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    Currently Unavailable $389.00
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  • Beaux Freres The Beaux Freres Vineyard Pinot Noir 1996 Front Bottle Shot
    Beaux Freres The Beaux Freres Vineyard Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from Ribbon Ridge, Willamette Valley, Oregon
    • WS91
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  • Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard Pinot Noir 1996 Front Label
    Williams Selyem Allen Vineyard Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from Napa Valley, California
    • WS90
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    Currently Unavailable $75.00
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  • Calera Mills Vineyard Pinot Noir 1996
    Pinot Noir from California
    • WS90
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    Currently Unavailable $50.39
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    50 39
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