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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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    Saint Clair Family Estate Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Marlborough, New Zealand
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    Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Saint Georges Premier Cru 2007
    Pinot Noir from Nuits-St-Georges, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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    Rivers-Marie Occidental Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
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    Kanzler Vineyards Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from North Coast, California
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    Saintsbury Stanly Ranch Carneros Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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    Kosta Browne 4 Barrel Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from California
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    Calera Mills Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Mt. Harlan, Central Coast, California
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    MacPhail Sangiacomo Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Sonoma County, California
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    Torii Mor Temperance Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Eola-Amity Hills, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Argyle Nuthouse Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Argyle Reserve Pinot Noir (375ML half-bottle) 2007
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Buena Vista Carneros Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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    Shea Pommard Clone Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Yamhill-Carlton District, Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Kosta Browne Keefer Ranch Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Veramonte Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Chile
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    Hamilton Russell Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from South Africa
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    Kutch Wines McDougall Ranch Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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    Londer Vineyards Paraboll Anderson Valley Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from North Coast, California
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    Ponzi Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Yabby Lake Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Australia
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    Adelsheim Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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    Saintsbury Lee Vineyard Carneros Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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    Domaine Carneros Carneros Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Carneros, California
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    Kosta Browne Garys' Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
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    Robert Stemmler Nugent Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007
    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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