Pinot noir grapes are grown around the world, mostly in the cooler regions, but the grape is chiefly associated with the Burgundy region. Other regions that have gained a reputation for Pinot noir include Willamette Valley, Carneros, Central Coast and Russian River Valley, South Africa, Yarra Valley in Australia and the Marlborough wine regions of New Zealand. It is widely considered to produce some of the finest wines in the world, but is a difficult variety to cultivate and transform into wine. The grape's tendency to produce tightly packed clusters and thin skin make it susceptible to several hazards and unpredictable aging.

Pinot to produce mostly lightly colored, medium bodied low tannin wines. When young, wines made from Pinot noir tend to have red fruit aromas of cherries, raspberries and strawberries. As the wines age, Pinots have the potential to develop vegetal and "barnyard" aromas that can contribute to the complexity of the wine.