Saturday, July 04, 2009

Another varietal character

Appropriately nicknamed the ‘heartbreak grape’, no other varietal can claim to have simultaneously seduced and rejected as many suitors. The greatest wines made from the vine possess a complexity and beauty that trap consumers and winemakers alike in a lifelong search for its equivalent. Pinot Noir’s character can be hard to qualify. In favorable cool-climate regions, Pinot Noir's youthful character can suggest flavors ranging from red berry fruit to cherries. As Pinot Noir-based wines mature, they rapidly develop strong earthy dimensions, such as forest floor, mushroom, game and violets. Young or old, Pinot Noir’s greatest attribute is a harmonious, even sublime combination of fruit, alcohol, body, acidity and tannin.