Pinot Noir titbits
- Notoriously hard to cultivate, the yields of pinot noir are far below those of most other grapes. As an example, leading French producers of cabernet sauvignon can expect a harvest of 3.5 tons per acre, while leading pinot noir producers will only harvest 1 ton.
- The US has almost overtaken France in terms of pure pinot noir production, devoting 73,600 acres to the variety compared with France’s 75,760.
- Pinot noir and chardonnay have long been known to grow well in the same climates, but only recently has it been discovered why – as it turns out, chardonnay is actually a descendent of the ancient pinot.
- Cracking the pinot code: While James Busby imported pinot noir to Australia in the 1930s, it took almost a century for someone to grow a commercially profitable vine, when Maurice O’Shea did so in the Hunter Valley in the 1920s.
- Beating the best: Australian pinot noir came of age at the 1976 Gault Millau Wine Olympics when Tyrrell’s Vat 6 won first place over some of France’s very finest wines.