Vin du Jour or "Wine of the Day" is a blog focusing on wine and all things it encompasses written in a prose that's intended to be fun, informative and thought provoking. Salut! (Like to contribute to the blog...then, contact us.)

Syrah in Drag?

Pinot Noir is certainly my favorite of the noble red grapes. When these wines are treated properly you can unmistakingly taste the elegance and finesse of this unique, thin skinned varietal.


Pinot Noir has the ability to profoundly express many different "terroirs". What is sad and disturbing to see is the current trend towards these "Syrah in Drag" Pinots being produce more and more frequently. You know the one, black as young Cabernet, exceedingly high (14%+) alcohol and just drowning in excessive extraction. These wines appeal to a new hedonistic style of wine that discourages differences in style and flavors. Over-ripe grapes attribute to low acid and high alcohol versions become wines that are so out of balance.


Honestly, if I wanted Syrah, I'd simply buy Syrah So, when I'm looking for finesse and food friendly Pinot Noir, I only go to two regions these days, Central Otago in New Zealand and Burgundy France. Here you will find Pinot Noirs that are leaner, distinct in style and lovely with food. They are simply outstanding. If you haven't tried them, you are truly missing out.


The last great Pinot I had the luxury of trying was 1999 Musigny from Georges Comte de Vogue. It was absolutely brilliant with bright cherries flavor and a silky mouthfeel with incredibly length on the palate. The wine screamed of floral notes of violets and rose petals. These are the great Pinots, that hopefully, you all will get a chance to try.


Until we meet again...




Dustin Jones

Director of Wine Education, VinVillage

Sommelier, Court of Master Sommeliers