Whether you’re a sommelier, avid consumer or just diving into the wine world, Pinot Noir is a fan-favorite. This popular light-bodied red wine is versatile in pairings with low tannins, high acidity and the perfect balance of red fruit, flower and spice. Regardless of how much you know about wine, here are some lesser-known facts about this smooth drink to bring out the next time you’re tasting with friends.
The name Pinot Noir is derived from the French words for “pine” and “black,” referring to the grape’s black pine-cone shaped clusters.
Pinot Noir is considered the grandparent to many other wines, such as Syrah. The grape is more than 1,000 years older than Cabernet Sauvignon and has been documented in France since the Roman era.
Pinot Noir is only the 10th most planted grape variety in the world due to the difficulty level of growing the grapes. Pinot Noir grapes grow in tight clusters, making them prone to rot when in humid conditions. The thin skins of the grape do not protect well against pests or extreme weather conditions and make them more susceptible to disease.
Pinot Noir is a family of grapes that are prone to mutations – Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc are all the same grape with color mutations.
Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are typically grown in the same regions due to their relation. Chardonnay is a cross between Pinot Noir and Gouais Blanc.
Pinot Noir is one of the few red grapes that is used in red, rosé, white and sparkling wines.
Germany is the 3rd largest producer of Pinot Noir, after France and the U.S. Pinot Noir is commonly referred to as Spätburgunder in Germany, meaning late-ripening-pinot.
August 18th is National Pinot Noir Day – mark your calendars and celebrate with us by sharing photos of your favorite Pinot Noir!