Explore the World of Pinot Noir And 6 Handy Tips for Enjoying It
“Only somebody who really takes the time to understand pinot's potential can then coax it into its fullest expression. Then, I mean, oh, its flavors. They're just the most haunting and brilliant and thrilling and subtle and ... ancient on the planet."
That loving description deceptively sounds like character Miles Raymond is talking about a dear friend in the Oscar-winning 2004 movie "Sideways". What the character was really talking about was his favourite wine, the Pinot Noir!
Tannin: Medium Low
Acidity: Medium High
Dry, light to medium-bodied wine.
Serving temperature: Served chilled (13 - 17°C). Too warm and it can start to taste too smoky and earthy, too cold and you’re going to lose the berry, black cherry and plum flavours.
Pinot Noir is a variety of wine that comes from the Pinot family of grapes, which includes varieties like Pinot Noir, Pinotage, and Pinot Meunier. Pinot Noir is generally known for its dark purple color, which comes from the combination of certain compounds in the skin of the grape.
Pinot Noir is known for producing wines with a fruity, floral, and slightly woody flavor profile. The best Pinot Noir wines are full bodied, with a bright, lively acidity that gives the wine a slight tanginess.
The Pinot family of grapes is native to the northwestern part of France, specifically the Burgundy region. As early as the 14th century, French monks were cultivating Pinot Noir grapes and making wine with it. Since then, Pinot Noir has become one of the most popular grapes in the world.
The Burgundy region is a large region in France, with over two million vines and more than two hundred vineyards producing Pinot Noir.
Today, the vast majority of the world’s Pinot Noir is made in France and Italy. The US, the UK, Australia and New Zealand also produce high-quality pinot noir wines.
Italy is known for its great wines, and Pinot Noir is no exception. Some of the world’s greatest Pinot Noir comes from the Piedmont region of Italy, which is located in the northwest corner of Italy.
The grapes are crushed, and the juice is extracted. The juice is then pressed through a series of filters (to remove the skins) and then fermented in stainless steel tanks.
The fermentation process is usually conducted in stainless steel tanks for approximately three years. The finished wine is then bottled and aged to its desired level of maturity.
Pinot Noir wines are generally versatile, and can go with a variety of foods. Some of the best food pairings for Pinot Noir include Charcuterie, ham, and other cold meats, Soft, nutty cheeses, such as taleggio, gruyere, brie, or goat cheese, grilled asparagus, spring vegetables like peas, gamey meats, like lamb or venison and poultry.
The acidity of the wine cuts through the fat in the meat, and the wine’s subtlety and complexity pair well with these foods.
A grape with such a rich history like the Pinot Noir produces not only single-grape wines but also well- known blends. Although a Pinot Noir blend tends to be a rarity, it still happens.
Mainly, you would see blends with just a touch of Shiraz to balance the Pinot Noir. But there's one blend that is massively successful and well known. That blend is Champagne.
Champagne is a blend of many grapes, but the three main grape varieties are Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay.
Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon are both varieties of red wine grapes that are very popular the world over and here in Asia too.
That said, they have several notable differences. Cabernet Sauvignon wines are usually made from purple grapes, like Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Malbec. Cabernet Sauvignon is usually strong in tannin, which gives the wine its characteristic “sting” and makes it suitable for red meats.
Pinot Noir, on the other hand, is usually made from purple-red grapes with a lighter tint, like Pinot Noir, Pinotage, and Pinot Meunier. It is usually regarded as a versatile wine option for food pairing.
Perfect Temperature: Pinot Noir is best served slightly chilled at about 13-17°C. (Yes, there are red wines that could also be served slightly chilled. One of these varieties is the Pinot Noir!)
The Right Glass: Drink your Pinot Noir from a large, bell-shaped glass to best enjoy its nose or aroma.
Don’t Decant: Pinot noir is ready to be served out of the bottle and does not necessarily need to be decanted.
Finish it Up: Drink Pinot Noir within a day after opening to keep the wine at its prime.
Age Gracefully: Pinot Noir can be aged for up to eight years.
Sip the Pinot Noir slowly to taste its unique flavor. Specifically, pay attention to how the flavor of the Pinot Noir changes as you sip it. Enjoy!!!!