Best Pinot Noir Under $20: Top Budget-Friendly Choices for Enthusiasts

Pinot Noir is a popular choice among wine enthusiasts due to its versatility, elegance, and complexity. This red wine variety presents an array of flavors and styles that can accommodate various tastes and preferences. However, the notion that all stellar Pinot Noirs come with an expensive price tag can be daunting for wine lovers on a budget.

Best Pinot Noir under 20 USD

Fortunately, there are many exceptional Pinot Noir options that won’t break the bank. With careful consideration, one can discover the best Pinot Noir under $20, providing a delightful tasting experience without compromising on quality.


We will highlight some of the best Pinot Noir selections that cater to budget-conscious wine enthusiasts, while discussing their flavor profiles, origins, and pairing possibilities. These affordable picks are perfect for those looking to indulge in the world of Pinot Noir without stretching their wallets too thin.

Understanding Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a red wine grape variety that originated in the Burgundy region of France. Known for its delicate, intricate flavors and aromas, it’s a popular choice among wine enthusiasts. The thin-skinned grape is notoriously difficult to grow, which can result in higher prices for quality bottles.

Flavor profile

The flavor profile of Pinot Noir includes notes of red fruit, such as cherry, raspberry and strawberry, as well as earthy characteristics like forest floor and mushroom. Depending on the region it’s grown in and the winemaking technique used, other flavors may also shine through, such as spice, floral, and mineral notes.

Pairing Pinot Noir Wines with Food

When it comes to pairing Pinot Noir with food, it’s a versatile option. Its high acidity and low tannin content make it suitable for pairing with a wide range of dishes, from grilled meats and hearty vegetable dishes to lighter fare like fish and poultry.

Pinot Noir-producing regions include Burgundy, France; Willamette Valley, Oregon; and Central Otago, New Zealand. Each region imparts its own unique characteristics to the wine, resulting in a diverse array of flavor profiles and styles for consumers to explore.

Top 10 Pinot Noir Under $20

Finding a delicious and affordable Pinot Noir can be challenging. However, there are some excellent Pinot Noir wines available for under $20 that are sure to please any wine lover. Here are our top 10 affordable Pinot Noir picks:

Factors to Consider When Choosing Affordable Pinot Noir

When looking for an affordable Pinot Noir, there are several factors to consider in order to find the best wine for your taste and budget. These factors include the wine’s region, vintage, tasting notes, and food pairings.


Pinot Noir is grown in various regions around the world, each with its own distinct characteristics. Some well-known regions for producing good-quality, affordable Pinot Noir include California, Oregon, and New Zealand. While wines from Burgundy, France, are typically more expensive, you can still find some hidden gems within your budget.


The year the grapes were harvested can greatly impact the wine’s taste and quality. Some vintages might be exceptional, while others might be less favorable due to weather conditions or other factors. Researching the best vintages for a particular region can help you select an affordable Pinot Noir that still delivers on taste and quality.

Tasting Notes

Understanding the wine’s tasting notes can give you an idea of its flavor profile, helping you choose a wine that suits your preferences. For example, some Pinot Noirs may have notes of red fruit, such as cherry or raspberry, while others might lean more towards earthy or spicy flavors. Reading reviews and checking tasting notes can be helpful in making an informed decision.

Perfect Pairings for Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is a versatile wine that pairs well with a wide range of dishes. Its light to medium body, bright acidity, and delicate flavors make it an ideal match for a variety of foods. Consider these suggestions for perfect pairings with Pinot Noir.

  • Poultry: Pinot Noir’s mild tannins and fruit-forward profile enhance the flavor of chicken and turkey dishes. Try it with a roasted chicken or a flavorful turkey and cranberry sauce combination.
  • Lamb: The earthy notes in Pinot Noir complement the rich, tender flavors of lamb. Pair a bottle with a savory lamb dish, like a rosemary-infused rack of lamb or braised lamb shanks.
  • Pork: The lean, tender profile of pork dishes harmonizes with the smooth texture and bright acidity of Pinot Noir. Enjoy it alongside a pork tenderloin or a dish featuring grilled, marinated pork chops.
  • Seafood: While many may reach for a white wine with seafood, Pinot Noir can create a surprising and delightful pairing. Consider seared scallops, grilled salmon, or tuna served rare, all of which make excellent complementary flavors for this versatile red.
  • Mushrooms: The earthy traits of mushrooms mirror the flavors in Pinot Noir, creating a fantastic pairing dynamic. Try a wild mushroom risotto or a truffle-infused pasta dish to elevate your dining experience.

With these pairings in mind, exploring the range of affordable Pinot Noirs under $20 becomes an exciting adventure for wine lovers. By selecting the right dishes to complement your wine, you can create memorable dining experiences without breaking your budget.

Storing and Serving Tips

Proper storage and serving of Pinot Noir can greatly enhance the tasting experience for wine lovers. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your affordable Pinot Noir pick:


  • Store wines in a cool, dark place, ideally at a consistent temperature between 50°F and 60°F (10°C and 15°C).
  • Keep the bottles in a horizontal position, which helps maintain the wine’s contact with the cork to prevent it from drying out and letting air in.
  • Avoid direct sunlight and minimize vibrations, as these factors can negatively impact the wine’s quality over time.


  • Allow the wine to breathe for about 30 minutes before serving to enhance its flavors.
  • Pinot Noir is best enjoyed at a slightly cooler temperature than room temperature, ideally around 60°F to 65°F (15°C to 18°C). You can achieve this by placing the bottle in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes before serving.
  • Use a large, round glass with a wide opening, as this allows the wine to aerate more effectively and exposes a greater surface area to your nose, improving the taste experience.

Best Pinot Noir Wines below 20 USD

You can easily find a great pinot noir without spending too much money. It strongly depends on where you live to find an inexpensive pinot noir. If you`re located in Europe you will find a good pinot noir from Europe and South America.

In case you live in North America you have to focus on Pinot Noir wines from California, Oregon, South America and New Zealand. Unfortunately it`s going to be difficult to find good pinot noir wines from Europe at affordable prices in North America.

WineCountryPriceReview Notes
Cono Sur Organic Pinot Noir 2021Chile13.99James Suckling 91
Tasting Panel 91
McManis Family Vineyards Pinot Noir 2021California, USA13.99Tasting Panel 91
Baron Philippe de Rothschild Escudo Rojo Pinot Noir ReservaChile19.99James Suckling 91
Ron Rubin Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2019California, USA19.99Tasting Panel 4,2
Nielson Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir 2016California, USA11.99Wine Enthusiast 94
Sketchbook Pinot Noir 2020California, USA20Wine Enthusiast 89-92
Ritual Casablanca Valley Pinot Noir 2019Chile18.99James Suckling 93
Talbott Kali-Hart Pinot Noir 2021California, USA19.99James Suckling 94
Cline Pinot Noir 2020California, USA18.99Tasting Panel 90
James Suckling 93
Erath Pinot Noir 2021Oregon, USA19.99Robert Parker 89-90

Take a look at our choice of inexpensive pinot noirs which satisfy every wine enthusiast:

Cono Sur Organic Pinot Noir 2021

Cono Sur Organic Pinot Noir 2021 is a wine that is sure to delight the senses. The wine’s deep ruby color and enticing aroma of ripe cherries, strawberries, and vanilla make it a feast for the eyes and nose. This Pinot Noir has been carefully crafted with organic grapes grown sustainably in Chile’s Bío-Bío Valley.

On the palate, Cono Sur Organic Pinot Noir 2021 offers a silky texture with flavors of raspberry, black cherry, and subtle hints of spice. The tannins are mild yet present, providing structure to the wine without overpowering its delicate nature. The finish is smooth and lingering, leaving you wanting more.

This wine pairs perfectly with grilled salmon or roasted chicken dishes. It also makes an excellent companion to mushroom risotto or herb-crusted lamb chops.

McManis Family Vineyards Pinot Noir 2021

McManis Family Vineyards Pinot Noir 2021 is a wine that is worth trying. This California Pinot Noir does not disappoint. The grapes used in this vintage were handpicked from the estate’s vineyards, ensuring that only the best grapes make it into the bottle.

This wine has an inviting aroma of red berry fruit like ripe cherries and raspberries with a hint of spice. On the palate, you will taste flavors of black cherry, vanilla, and oak with a slight smokiness. It has a smooth mouthfeel and balanced acidity that makes it easy to drink on its own or paired with food. This Pinot Noir is perfect for those who enjoy full-bodied red wines but don’t want anything too heavy.

Baron Philippe de Rothschild Escudo Rojo Pinot Noir Reserva

Baron Philippe de Rothschild Escudo Rojo Pinot Noir Reserva is an exclusive wine that has earned a reputation for its exceptional quality. This powerful and elegant red wine is crafted using the finest grapes sourced from the Casablanca Valley in Chile.

The Escudo Rojo Pinot Noir Reserva has a deep ruby color that captures the essence of its rich flavor profile. Upon opening this bottle, you will be greeted by aromas of black rich cherry, raspberry, and vanilla that are sure to delight your senses. On tasting it, you will experience notes of ripe fruit and subtle hints of oak that melt into a smooth finish that lingers on your palate.

Ron Rubin Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2019

The Ron Rubin Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2019 is a wine that has been carefully crafted to perfection. This particular vintage comes from one of the best winegrowing regions in California, the Russian River Valley, and it shows in every sip. With its ruby red color and complex aromas of black cherries, raspberries, and vanilla, this Pinot Noir will delight your senses.

On the palate, you’ll experience a rich and full-bodied wine with flavors of dark fruit such as plums and blackberries. The tannins are silky smooth and provide a perfect balance with the acidity level. This Pinot Noir has been oak aged for 11 months in French oak barrels which gives it just the right amount of oakiness without being overpowering. Overall, this is a great example for a wine that will pair well with grilled meats or hearty pasta dishes.

Nielson Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir 2016

The Nielson Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir 2016 from Santa Barbara is a wine that truly captures the essence of its terroir. This wine comes from one of the coolest regions in California, and it shows in every sip. The cooler temperatures allow for a longer growing season, resulting in grapes that are both rich and complex.

This Pinot Noir has a beautiful ruby color with aromas of red cherries, raspberries, and a hint of vanilla. On the palate, you’ll taste flavors of ripe berries and spice with a silky smooth finish. It’s an elegant wine that pairs well with food or can be enjoyed on its own.

This vintage was aged for 10 months in French oak barrels, which gives it just the right amount of oakiness without overpowering the fruit flavors.

Sketchbook Pinot Noir 2020

The Sketchbook Pinot Noir 2020 is a wine that anyone who appreciates quality and craftsmanship will love. This wine has a smooth finish and complex flavors that are sure to impress even the most discerning palate.

One of the things that sets the Sketchbook Pinot Noir 2020 apart from other wines is its unique flavor profile. It has notes of black cherry, raspberry, strawberry and vanilla, which combine to create a rich and delicious taste that lingers on the tongue. Additionally, this wine has a medium body with soft tannins, making it easy to drink and enjoy.

Ritual Casablanca Valley Pinot Noir 2019

Ritual Casablanca Valley Pinot Noir 2019 is a wine that encapsulates the essence of Chilean winemaking. Produced by Viña Cono Sur, one of the country’s leading wine producers, this pinot noir has become a favorite among wine enthusiasts around the globe. The 2019 vintage is especially noteworthy, as it boasts an exquisite balance of fruitiness and acidity.

The grapes for this pinot noir are grown in the picturesque Casablanca Valley, which is located between the Andes Mountains and the Pacific Ocean. The valley’s unique climate and soil composition give these grapes their distinctive flavor profile.

The resulting wine has intense aromas of red cherry and raspberry, with hints of vanilla and clove. On the palate, it delivers a smooth texture with flavors that echo its aroma: ripe cherry and dark berry fruits with a subtle touch of spice.

Talbott Kali-Hart Pinot Noir 2021

Talbott Kali-Hart Pinot Noir 2021 is a wine that is sure to impress even the most discerning of palates. This vintage boasts a beautiful ruby color with aromas of juicy red fruit like ripe cherries, vanilla, and toasted oak. On the palate, it delivers flavors of dark fruit and baking spices with a smooth finish.

The grapes for this Pinot Noir were sourced from the Kali-Hart vineyard in Monterey County, California. The vineyard sits on the foothills of the Santa Lucia Mountains and benefits from cool ocean breezes that create ideal growing conditions for Pinot Noir grapes. The result is an exceptional wine that truly captures the essence of the region.

This is a food friendly wine that pairs well with a variety of dishes including roasted chicken or pork, grilled salmon, and mushroom risotto.

Cline Pinot Noir 2020

Cline Pinot Noir 2020 is a wine that has been highly anticipated by wine lovers worldwide. The Cline Family Cellars have been producing wines for over three decades, and this latest offering is a testament to their commitment to quality.

The 2020 vintage of Cline Pinot Noir boasts a beautiful ruby color with aromas of black cherry, raspberry, and vanilla. On the palate, it is rich and complex with flavors of plum, spice, and dark chocolate. The tannins are soft and silky, providing an incredibly smooth finish that lingers long after the last sip.

This wine pairs perfectly with grilled meats such as beef or lamb. It also complements dishes like mushroom risotto or roasted vegetables.

Erath Pinot Noir 2021

Erath Winery is one of the most prominent wineries in Oregon, renowned for its exquisite Oregon Pinot Noir wines. The 2021 vintage of Erath Pinot Noir is no exception, offering a delightful blend of elegance and complexity that will transport you to the heart of Oregon’s wine country.

This wine is crafted from hand-picked grapes grown in prime vineyards across the Willamette Valley, where cool temperatures and long growing seasons create the perfect conditions for producing high-quality Pinot Noir.

The Erath Pinot Noir 2021 has a deep ruby color that immediately catches your eye. On the nose, it offers an enticing bouquet of ripe red fruits like cherries and raspberries, as well as subtle hints of vanilla and clove.


Pinot Noir is a versatile and delicious wine choice for many occasions. While it can be quite expensive, there is no shortage of great options for under $20. These budget-friendly picks offer outstanding value and taste, making them ideal for wine lovers who don’t want to break the bank.

Hi, my name is Christina Day, and I am a self-proclaimed wine connoisseur. It is my favorite alcoholic drink, and I enjoy nothing better than kicking back on the sofa after a long week of work to enjoy a glass of wine… or two!

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