If Riesling is the variety that is both dry and sweet at the same time, Merlot is the full-bodied attitude wine and Champagne is the inevitable sparkly. So what is Pinot Noir then? If you have been asking yourself this question, then you are on the right path on your wine journey, since this is the question that is supposed to come right after you get to know the aforementioned varietals. You simply don’t start with a Pinot Noir, and if by any chance you do, confusion will be the the least of your problems; your whole wine journey will simply end too quickly, and where’s the fun in that?!
So, take your time and get to know wine step by step. Try every other variety before you move to Pinot Noir, be it the De Bortoli Yarra Valley, Stonier or Penfolds and do not worry, you will quickly be ready to taste it. Shortly, you should expect a story that includes a light David Bowie, a medium Grace Jones and a full Jimi Hendrix kind of tastes in your mouth. Pinot Noir is a wine variety that once you get familiarized with, you will start using it for all occasions and purposes. It is a rarely versatile red variety, and as such it is only natural that you think of it as a dinner choice, a gift, or maybe even as a cooking wine when needed.
The thin skin of the grapes, the low yields and the cold climate areas in which is grown – they all contribute to the romance called Pinot Noir. At least that is what Miles Raymond thinks of it in the 2004 comedy-drama Sideways, which apparently made the sales of this wine hit the roof. The thing with Pinot Noir is that it is like a stranger in the night you actually know; you know the type, but you still do not know if it is going to be incredibly artistic and enthralling; which it can definitely be.
Do you feel you are ready to take this step on your wine journey? If you do, I would like to suggest you something to start with: the Stonier Pinot Noir. The notes of cherry and red fruits to the nose and captivating florals on the tongue. Do not be fooled by the presence of florals; this variety is everything but gentle. Once the florals soften the taste buds, the earthy notes and strong tannins will remind you of Pinot’s true character: unpredictable.
Considering it is very much a matter of taste, I will quote the amazing explanation Sims gave on the touring event of Game of Thrones: “Pinot is a grape variety that excites us the most and dissapoints us the most. When it’s good, it’s mind-blowing, and when it’s bad it’s just frustrating”. So, are you ready to explore the mysticism Pinot Noir is defined with?