Pinot Noir is one of the oldest grape varietals in the world. It’s more than 1,000 years older than the ever-popular Cabernet Sauvignon, and is the 10th most-planted grape varietal in the world (Cabernet Sauvignon being No. 1 in this category).
But, while it is one of the most popular red wines produced around the world—primarily in France, the U.S.A, and Germany—finding quality Pinot Noirs that genuinely represent the grape’s character at an affordable price point can be challenging if you don’t know where to start.
American producers of Pinot Noir—specifically in Oregon and California because of their latitudinal proximity to Burgundy, France; their terroir, and rich wine-making history—have done an exceptional job at growing and vinifying this temperamental grape varietal so that American drinkers can affordably experience the wide range of flavors and character that Pinot Noir has to offer.
“I’ve always loved Pinot Noir; it’s expressive and its naturally firm acidity enlivens the palate to pair well with a variety of foods,” says Joe Wagner, a fifth generation winemaker and proprietor of Copper Cane Wine and Provisions in Napa Valley.
“My approach and vision with Böen [his budget-friendly wine label] is that great tasting wine shouldn’t be out of reach to enjoy everyday and great wine should be shared among friends, so it shouldn’t and doesn’t need to break the bank.”
As a consumer in the modern age where we are flooded with an overwhelming number of options, most drink enthusiasts want to taste the goods before splashing the cash on something like a bottle of wine.
So, we’ve taken the time to round up a range of seven of the best American Pinot Noirs that you can buy for under $30.
2013 Lafond Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir
Pinot Noirs from this region are inherently great for pairing with food. Red fruit, wet stone, and earthiness on the nose; followed by flavors of plum, and blackberry jam, make this rich, juicy and brightly acidic Pinot a must-try.