Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, but you can call me Vinny. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the fine points of etiquette to the science of winemaking. And don't worry, I'm no wine snob—you can also ask me those "dumb questions" you're too embarrased to ask your wine geek friends! I hope you find my answers educational, empowering and even amusing. And don't forget to check out my most asked questions and my full archives for all my Q&A classics.
Dear Dr. Vinny,
I adore Pinot Noir. Which regions of the country produce some of the best Pinots? Oregon’s Willamette Valley, California’s Sonoma Coast, Anderson Valley, Russian River Valley?
—Scott, Monroe, La.
Sounds like you’ve got a great handle on the U.S. Pinot Noir scene. Don’t forget that in Oregon, Willamette Valley is a large region, and it’s broken up into several more American Viticultural Areas, or AVAs. So, look for some of these names, which might appear on bottlings from different corners of Willamette Valley: Dundee Hills, Yamhil-Carlton, McMinnville, Eola Hills and Ribbon Ridge.
In California, don’t forget Carneros, Edna Valley, Santa Rita Hills and Santa Lucia Highlands. I’m glad you’re exploring domestic Pinot Noirs, which I think are better than ever!