The specific set of rules that follow is what most people I've met would recognize as the "default" rules for Pinochle. It might more accurately be called Single-Deck Partnership Auction Racehorce Pinochle. I've posted a set of the rules based on the ones I found at Card Games Central. The same rules are also found at Rules Central.

If you're not familiar with the game, go to those sites first. If you are, I've prepared a cut-down version with notes on variations that I've found common, my recommended choices on those variations, and why.


A great game for learning about trump and bidding in trick taking games, preferably after people have already mastered the basics of trick taking, such as by learning Hearts first. From here they can then move on to playing Spades, which is overall a funner game, but Pinochle is still a great one.