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Pinot Noir grapes

Pinot noir is an extremely popular red wine grape variant belonging to the Vitis vinifera specie.

This wine derives its name from the French words for black and pine, since this dark coloured grape used for making this wine seems as if it is in the shape of a tightly clustered, pine cone shaped bunch.

Pinot noir grapes are mostly grown in the cooler climes of the world and are chiefly associated with Burgundy region of France.

Other regions, which have developed a reputation for Pinot Noir, include, Willamette Valley of Oregon, Walker Bay region of South Africa, Central Coast, Carneros and Russian River, American viticultural Areas of California in USA, Yarra Valley and Tasmania of Australia and the Central Otago, Marlborough and Martinborough regions of New Zealand.

Pinot noir grape variants are also, one of the primary ingredients used in the production of sparkling wines, not only in the Champagne region, but across the wine regions of the world.

Pinot Noir Wine Characteristics

The Pinot Grape variants produce one of the finest wines in the world.

The only problem with this grape variant is, it is extremely challenging to cultivate it and transform it into wine.

These grape variants tend to develop in tightly packed clusters, which make it extremely susceptible to several viti-cultural hazards, which include rotting, and hence these grape variants require proper canopy management.

In general, these grape variants are weak, with them suffering from many diseases. The genetics of this grape also makes it highly susceptible to mutation.

The Pinot grape has a thin skin and contains low levels of phenolic compounds, which tends to produce a light coloured, rather pale, translucent, medium bodied, low tannin wine, which requires considerable amount of aging.

This wine produces a very subtle flavour. Young, Pinot Noir wines tend to have a red fruit aroma of raspberries, strawberries and cherries.

Older and aged wines tend to develop vegetal and barnyard aromas, which rather increase the complexity of the wine.

Pinot Noir Wine Regions

Pinot Noir variants of grapes occupy around 117,000 hectares (290,000 acres) of plantation land worldwide.

These plantation lands happen to be in the following regions of the following countries:

  • Nuits St. Georges, Morey St. Denis, Vougeot, Flagney Echezeaux, Gevrey Chambertin, , Chambolle Musigny, Aloxe Corton, Vosne Romanee regions of France roughly accupying around 75,760 acres of land
  • Sta Rita Hills, Santa Lucia Highlands, Sonoma, , Willamette Valley regions of United states roughly occupying 73,600 acres of land
  • Pfalz, Rheinhessen, Württemberg, Baden regions of Germany roughly occupying 29,049 acres of land
  • Central Otago, Martinborough, Marlborough regions of New Zealand roughly occupying 10,648 acres of land
  • Veneto, Alto Adige, Fruili regions of Italy roughly occupying 10,082 acres of land
  • Victoria region of Australia roughly occupying 8,693 acres of land
  • Maipu Valley, Casablanca Valley, Limari Valley, Central Valley regions of Chile roughly occupying 7,127 acres of land
  • Rio Negro region of Argentina roughly occupying 4,450 acres of land
  • Stellenbosch, Walker Bay, Western Cape region of South Africa roughly occupying 2,520 acres of land

Pinot Noir Wine taste and flavours

The fruity notes associated with Pinot Noir wines include cherry, Raspberry and Cranberry.

The earthy, vegetable and herbal or floral notes associated with Pinot Noir wines include tobacco, cola, caramel, clove, licorice, mushroom, vanilla and wet leaves.

Pinot Noir wine, when aged for long, tends to give out French Oak barrel flavour. As far as tannin level is concerned, it is medium low, with medium high levels of acidity.

This wine needs to be aged for 2-18 years depending on the style it is prepared in.

As far as temperature to be served at is concerned, it should ideally be 17 degrees Celsius or 63 degrees Fahrenheit

Pinot Noir Food Pairing

Pinot Noir is a wine, which goes well with almost all food types.

Pinot Noir goes well with meats like that of duck, pork, chicken, veal or cured meat due to its complexity.

It also goes well a fish like salmon due to its light taste. This wine really blends well with French and German cuisine.

This wine also goes well with Soft Cheeses and nutty medium cheeses like Comté.

In fact Comté (also called as Gruyère de Comté) and Pinot Noir can form a perfect cheese and a wine pair.

Author

Michael Bredahl

Michael Bredahl

Wine Writer

Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂

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