October 22, 2018

8 Oregon Pinot Noirs for $30 or Less

by Tim Fish

“‘Value’ and ‘Pinot Noir’ are not often found in the same sentence. That’s because Pinot is the fussy child of red wines, persnickety in the vineyard and in the cellar, making average price-points for the wines relatively high. But as today’s selection of new releases demonstrates, and as George Gershwin once rhapsodized, it ain’t necessarily so.

Oregon, and particularly Willamette Valley, makes some of the best and most dynamic Pinot Noirs in the country. While most come at a premium, there are still bargains to be had if you look for them. Shop carefully: Go for an Oregon-designated wine from a reliably good-quality producer, like Erath. You’ll also find here several picks from Willamette Valley that over-deliver for the price, as well as from Rogue Valley, in the south of the state.

2016 Argyle Willamette Valley Pinot Noir – 90 Points: Outstanding; a wine of superior character and style

Graceful and bright, with lively raspberry, cinnamon and green tea flavors that finish on a snappy note. Drink now through 2023. 39,000 cases made.”