Varietal 3: Pinot Noir| Part C: Tasting Notes

  • Primary:  Red fruit, red fruit, red fruit… Strawberry, raspberry, cranberry, red cherry in varying stages from just-ripe and tart to candied or dried.  Compared to the other red wine varietals covered by DOMSOM, Pinot Noir’s fruit flavors are the lightest and most subdued.  Always dry, the varietal’s higher acidity and lower tannins make the overall experience of the wine lighter and versatile. 
  • Secondary:  Pinot Noir can take on gorgeous complexity when exposed to oak, however, new, bold oak can overwhelm this varietal if overexposed.  Light smoke, toast, vanilla, clove and baking spice nuances develop with oak exposure and keeping these influences subtle is key to ensuring the wines remain true to the grape’s primary flavor profiles.
  • Tertiary:  Aging brings out some of the most interesting and unique flavors in Pinot Noir compared to other red wine varietals.  Wet earth, composting leaves and forest floor paired with the undeniable presence of mushrooms make for highly complex and often difficult to describe flavors and aromas.  As Pinot Noirs age, their fruits transition toward dried cherries and strawberries while remaining fresh from the higher acidity which is maintained for years or decades.