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What are the best pinot noir wines?

Curious about one of the most popular red wines...ever? Learn the history, flavors and most shopped pinot noirs on Drizly. Then get it delivered to your door like a magician.

What is the best pinot noir?

Originating from Burgundy, France, pinot noir has become one of the most beloved red wines around the world. But how do you serve it? What does it taste like? There’s so many -WHICH ONE DO YOU BUY? Hold your horses, we’ve got you covered.

Pinot noir flavor profile

Pinot noir grapes are thin skinned and grow in tight clusters. This is different from other widely known grape varieties. These two factors combined actually makes this grape pretty prone to rot. With either too much or too little water, this grape is toast. Like most grape varieties though, they thrive in sunshine.

As a wine, you’ll find flavor notes of raspberry, clove and cherry. It’s a lighter bodied red wine with low tannins and medium acidity. Usually, you’ll find pinot noirs between 11.5-13.5% ABV.

(Pst - wondering what a tannin is? It's a compound found in grape skin, seeds and stems. It's what gives wine that drying feeling on your palate when sipping wine. The longer a wine sits with its skins, stems and seeds - the higher the tannins.)

This wine variety is commonly grown in France, California, Oregon, Germany (it’s labelled Spätburgunder, here) and New Zealand. Pinot noirs will taste different depending on where it’s grown, so try a few and see if your palate has a favorite region. Here's a brief breakdown of this variety by region:

FRANCE

The king of pinot noir, French varieties of this wine have flavors of cherry, raspberry, spice and vanilla. Many Burgundian winemakers also use "Burgundian" techniques, like barrel fermentation, which makes the wine even more unique.

CALIFORNIA

These wines are rich and fruity. You'll find flavor notes of cherry, allspice and raspberry.

OREGON

These wines are more fine than their siblings to the south. You'll note delicate flavors such as strawberry, raspberry and earthier flavors like truffle and flower.

GERMANY

Similar to Oregon, Germany is known for cool-climate style pinot. Flavor profiles between the two have some similarity. Expect notes sof cranberry and cherry with hints of earthiness.

NEW ZEALAND

Known for their sauvignon blanc, New Zealand pinot noir is lighter than other regions with flavor notes of red cherry, cranberry and spice.

How to serve pinot noir

Light bodied red wines, pinot included, are served best between 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit. Let it breathe for about 30 minutes before serving and pour into an aroma collector glass.

Pinot noir is a really versatile red wine, which is a big reason it’s so popular. Wines with low tannins and high acidity pair with a lot of different foods. Try pairing with anything from duck to seafood. It also pairs great with vegetables like cauliflower and carrots. Traditionally, pinot noir is also served with meat dishes like beef bourguignon.

Curious which pinot to try? We've got a few ideas. Here are the best selling pinot noirs on Drizly.