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Last week I wrote about Chateauneuf-du-Pape in the Loire region. This week I find myself further North in Burgundy to talk about Pinot Noir.
Not just a favourite in France
The Pinot Noir is a thin-skinned red grape from Burgundy, France. This can be another pesky grape to grow but if you harvest at the right time you are left with one of the most outstanding wines in the world. The terroir in Burgundy makes a Pinot Noir a popular planting as the alkaline soil neutralises the acidity levels in the vines. It’s not just Burgundy where plantings are common though, Chile, California and New Zealand also play a great role in the production and success of Pinot Noir.
The thin skins mean that Pinot Noir wines are light in colour, tannins and body. Hurrah! So if you’re new to red wine or fancy a glass of red on its own then this varietal is a great place to start. In young wines the aroma is filled with wild fruit berries and the tannins are soft and ripe. The palate is smooth with no harsh acidity. Tasting is believing so why not try our Sibaris Pinot Noir Reserva Especial and let me know what you think!
In a more mature Pinot wine you will find the bouquet has hints of wild thyme and earthiness as well as the black fruits and crushed cherries. The tannic structure is tight revealing silky yet firm tannins that grip to your mouth and promote a long finish. You may also find that the older vintages have a rustic edge to the palate. If you’re interested in ageing a red wine then Maude Central Otago from New Zealand is a great buy and has the ageing potential of up to 10 years!
Food I would recommend to go with Pinot Noir are classics. Dishes such as duck breast with redcurrant sauce and oven braised lamb shanks work great. For younger Pinot Noir also try a mushroom linguine.
What better feeling than relaxing on an evening with a glass of red and some fine cuisine?
Red grapes in Champagne?
Champagne enthusiasts may also be pleased to know that Pinot Noir is a dominant grape in Champagne. Similar to making rose wine, the Pinot Noir grapes are only slightly pressed against the skins meaning the wine is primarily made from just juice and no skins. Chardonnay is also another grape used in the production of Champagne.