Unpolished Grape Series: Pinot Noir


Pinot Noir is a very old black grape variety originating from Burgundy, France. Relatively speaking, it is a somewhat challenging grape to grow because it is highly susceptible to damage during spring frosts and rainy/humid weather around harvest time. As a result, many Pinot Noir wines are on the pricier side. It is often one of the most sought after wines, with historical roots in religious practices like communion and other highly-esteem rituals.

Many of the best expressions are found in cooler to moderate climates where it can produce lighter drinking styles full of refreshing red fruit flavors. When it is grown in hot climates, the fruit flavors turn a bit blacker and have more of a cooked fruit characteristic. Known for its complexity and long finishes, aged expressions of Pinot Noir produce flavors of earth, mushroom and forest floor.

Burgundy, France

Pinot Noir is the famed black grape of Burgundy, France. Here, it is one of two black grapes allowed to be grown under the Burgundy AOC classification (the other is Gamay.) It is famously grown on the Côte d’ Or (Slopes of Gold), where some of its most well-known expressions come from the French Villages of Geoffrey-Chambertin, Vougeot, Vosne-Romanee, Nuits-Saint-George, Pommard and Volnay.

Around the World

This grape is grown across the world, mainly in cooler to moderate climates. It is widely planted in northern Oregon, Russian River Valley in California, Chile, Australia, South Africa, and New Zealand, where many famed expressions come from its Central Otago region.

Food Pairings

Pinot Noir pairs well with chicken, turkey and duck dishes, pastas, salmon, pulled pork, stew, lamb and cheeses. It also compliments rustic and earthy vegetables.


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