Often overshadowed by its more famous peers, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier is an important part of the traditional sparkling blend in both Champagne and England.

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A wine made of 100% Pinot Meunier is a rather rare find. Nevertheless, this often overlooked grape variety plays an important part in production of some of the best sparkling wines in the world. In France, Pinot Meunier is used as part of the Champagne blend, along with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Likewise, in England, this grape is one of the varieties used to make the acclaimed English sparkling wines.

Pinot Meunier buds later and ripens earlier than its stablemates, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Thus, Meunier often saves the day in poor vintages, when the other two grapes get damaged by spring frosts or autumn rainfall. 

As one might suspect from the name, Pinot Meunier is related to Pinot Noir. In fact, Meunier is a mutation of the ancient Pinot variety, which also gave birth to Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc.  

Ripe Pinot Meunier grape
Pinot Meunier vineyard

Aromas And Styles

Pinot Meunier enhances the sparkling wine blend with bright fruity aromas of cherries, raspberries and strawberries, as well as a touch of minerality. It also adds body, richness and freshness to the wine.

Often overshadowed by its more famous peers, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier actually has potential to produce complex varietal wines. A few producers in both England and Champagne have been experimenting with this grape recently, making 100% Pinot Meunier sparkling wine. However, many winemakers are still cautious about making varietal wines of Pinot Meunier as it is widely believed that this grape cannot age well. 

Pinot Meunier WINES