Today’s question is from Mary-Beth from East Village (New York City) who asks “What are the differences between Pinot Noir, Cabernet and Merlot?”.
Video sum up: What are the differences between Pinot Noir, Cabernet and Merlot?
This question is very difficult to answer because these grapes are growing in a lot of different regions and will behave differently based on the winemaker preferences, on how the wine is stored, on terroir…
Pinot Noir, Cabernet and Merlot are the three major grapes called the noble grapes.
Pinot Noir is a very popular grape partly thanks to the movie Sideways. It’s an extraordinary grape which makes extraordinary wines in the right hands.
Pinot Noir is very difficult to grow: the skin is thin, the grapes are fragile, the wine once produced is also fragile. Pinot Noir comes from Burgundy (France).
In general Pinot Noir has a light color, lighter notes on the nose when it’s young (fresh berries, floral notes) and shows some earthiness.
Cabernet is a bigger grape, full of tannins, sometimes difficult to drink when it is young. The primary grape of Bordeaux.
The Australian Carbernet (Thorpe Rsv Cabernet) is much bigger on the nose (glycerin, eucalyptus). Cabernet are darker than Pinot Noir.
Merlot is also a very popular grape. Merlot is a little easier to grow than Cabernet and Pinot Noir. Merlot is the primary grape used in Chateau Petrus (one of the most famous and expensive wine in the world).
Finally always keep in mind that any grape can be managed to do different things.
- Ellen d’Angeac Pinot Noir, Burgundy, France
- Thorpe Cabernet Sauvignon, Australia
- Castello Carboncine Merlot, Italy
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