Is Pinot Noir overrated?

Many young (and old) wine lovers are skeptical about the big fuss over Pinot Noir. And while Pinotphiles are usually very dismissive of these skeptics, I use this video to discuss why sometimes they are right to be skeptical.


No. Some wines made by Pinot Noir grapes, yes.


Pinot Noir is a grape variety … grown in many different places worldwide.

Burgundy is a wine region in France, mostly planted with Pinot Noir (red), Chardonnay (white), Gamay (in Beaujolais and in other minor spots) and a few other varieties as exceptions.

The best wines from Burgundy made from Pinot Noir are certainly not overrated (but overpriced nowadays). They are among the best wines grown and made on this planet …

However, the farther you step down the (quality) ladder, the more you have “only” Pinot Noir and not really “Burgundy” anymore (apart from legal designations). However, top producers still can achieve excellent wines from minor vineyards, but the “magic of great Burgundy” is rarely to be found in these simpler Pinot Noirs - THEN we can talk about overrated YES or NO.

There are other places worldwide planted with Pinot Noir, and sometimes outstanding wines are produced from these vineyards (also in Austria) … whether they are overrated or not depends on what´s in the bottle …

Simply because it´s from Pinot Noir doesn´t mean it´s fine wine.


I’ll listen to the video when I have a chance (long train trip on sunday, for example) but I can say this:

I’ve been thinking the same to a certain degree, not because I’ve tasted many underwhelming pinot noirs but because I know a lot of wine enthusiast or experts (in person or through social) where over 60% of the red whine they drink is either burg or langhe, and probably 75% of their red wine budget are shoot toward those 2 regions. I’d also say 90% of the talk. And I’m partly a victim on this as well.

I’ve never seen a wine enthusiast being very keen on, let’s say, Aglianico. Or Cab Franc.

So is Pinot Noir that much better at meeting people taste, or are we influenced to a certain degree by our mentors / peers?


What? :grinning:

I mean there’s a strong CF following even on this very board! And I know several Aglianico buffs. I guess you should just meet more wine enthusiasts.


Agreed. There are oodles of threads here dedicated to Loire Cab Franc.

Now Gamay…no true enthusiasts there! :wink:

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I might be in the ballpark of the 20 something wine enthusiast I know / follow. It’s not much but not a single one who’s focused mainly on Aglianico. I do know something who’s focused on sherry (but he’s in the business and I suspect he’s paid for promoting sherry)

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I think you misunderstood me:

There are a lot of Cab Franc enjoyers (myself included) but how many people that are primarely and heavily focused on Cab Franc? I don’t know any.




Now tag me the burgheads :smiley:



My weightlifting buddy @MChang has it right. About 1/3 of my “cellar” is Loire Cab Franc, and it comprises a lot of my midweek drinking, as does Beaujolais. More than 1/3 of my “cellar” is Bordeaux, and I have a definite preference for those that have a healthy dollop of Cab Franc, like Vieux Chateau Certain (and Cheval Blanc, which I do not regularly buy for the obvious reasons), or Bordeaux that you would swear have huge cuts of Franc, like Sociando Mallet and Clos du Jaugueyron.

@Marc_Frontario and @I_Howe as well!


You already got a few CF proof :partying_face:

As for Aglianico, I’m sure many love it, I do at least, but to have it as a main focus makes it very narrow. If you compare the number of high quality producers (at the moment) of Aglianico and those of Nebbiolo or Pinot noir…

Many more high quality producers need to become known from the Aglianico producing regions before we start seeing wine lovers to focus on it.


I know what you are doing there!



I hope people buy, drink and enjoy the wines that appeal to them, rather than feeling the need to be influenced by peer pressure, hype, prestige or anything else that should have no bearing on how the wine tastes to them.

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I heard someone say once, “All roads lead to Pinot.”

When I started this wine journey I was not much of a Pinot fan. Which I suppose was kind of weird, because I was instantly smitten with Gamay / Cru Beaujolais. I even bought and tried some Burgs, but they just did not do it for me. They were not bad, but I did not have that ah ha moment.

The one Berzerker’s Day I bought some Patricia Green Berzerker’s Cuvee. And “BAM”, I saw it. And then I tried Longplay. And then Briceland. And in between I ordered some low level Burgs. And while these Pinot’s are not at the top of my total inventory list, every time I drink one I very much enjoy them and ask myself why I do not have more of them?

The answer is I already have too much wine and am trying to reduce my cellar, and I know better than to wade into the money pit minefield that is Burg, but I still ask myself the question.


I think the vast majority of Americans start out drinking Cabernet. I think burg drinkers outside of this forum are pretty rare.

I drink very little non-burgundy Pinot noir; I drink more Cabernet than other Pinots, for sure.

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Without looking it up, I’d guess there is 1% as much cab franc planted in the world as Pinot Noir, and probably fewer than 1% as many producers who are bottling all or mostly cab franc wines (as opposed to it just being a small part of blends).

So it’s not as though anyone should expect a similar number of people primarily or heavily focused on cab franc.


I’ve found there’s a decent amount of people focused on Cab Franc. If you want to check some out, take a look at Leah Jørgensen (, who is focusing on Oregon Cab Franc. Allison Slute – aka Cab Franc Chronicles – also has a whole website ( and Instagram page (Cab Franc Chronicles (@cabfrancchronicles) • Instagram photos and videos) dedicated to Cab Franc.


Yes, at least the stuff from CA.
I don’t like it or drink it.

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It’s an empty hope Ian.

I do not stand and think clearly “folk X is drinking a lot of burg, I should do too so I can hang out with the cool kids”. Yet again, the Burg and Langhe tendency is so clear among almost everyone I know (that are into wine) so I won’t skip on the idea that there’s a bit of influencing going around subsconsciously

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