‘Total Wine & More’ Pinot Noir Value Challenge Kickoff!

Pinot Noir vines
Pinot Noir vines.  Credit: http://www.slrobertson.com

Pinot Noir Challenge Overview

Ahhhhh… Pinot Noir! The king of Burgundy! The heartbreak grape!  The most elegant and treasured varietal, for only the most sophisticated of collectors!  Or at least, that is, if you’re willing to drop $28,112 on a single bottle of 1990 Romanee-Conti DRC.  :-O

1990 Romanee-Conti DRC.  Credit: telegraph.co.uk

Really good Pinot Noir is really expensive. And it’s really expensive for good reasons…  Its thin skin and high susceptibility to rot and disease makes the Pinot Noir grape one of the most difficult to grow.  Not to mention that the best terrior and conditions for good Pinot results in very low yields.  (IE: You need to grow a lot of grapes vines to get just a little bit of good wine.) At the end of the day, Pinot Noir is just a very labor intensive and expensive grape to grow well, resulting in high consumer costs.

So… fine… if you can drop $27,000 (the Per Capita GDP of Poland, btw) on a single bottle of wine, you’re probably going to get some great Pinot Noir.  But what about the rest of us?  Can we get some good Pinot Noir too? Is it even possible to find a decent bottle of Pinot Noir for $10?

Well, we’re going to find out!  We’ve got 11 bottles lined up for this month’s challenge.  9 from California, 1 from France, and 1 from Oregon.  (I’d love to include other great regions like Central Otego, New Zealand or Burgundy, France but our $10 budget just isn’t going to allow it.  At $10 we’re pretty much stuck with California and a very slim selection of value-oriented French and Oregonian options.)  The bottles vary in price from $6.99 to $11.99 and are primarily from the 2014 and 2015 vintages. Everything was purchased at retail at Total Wine & More.

If you’d like to learn more about Pinot Noir before digging into these bottles, I invite you to visit the great WineFolly blog: http://winefolly.com/review/pinot-noir-wine-facts/

WineFolly Pinot Noir Post

So, without further ado, here are the competitors in our ‘Total Wine and More’ Pinot Noir Value Challenge!

The Challengers

Acacia Pinot Noir A 2015 – California –  $8.97 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 85  /  Vivino = 3.5 out of 5


Acacia Pinot


Beringer Founder’s Estate Pinot Noir 2014 – California – $7.99 @ TotalWine

CellarTracker = 86.5  / Vivino = 3.5


Beringer Pinot

Bogle Vineyards Pinot Noir 2014 – California –  $8.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 86  /  Vivino = 3.5 out of 5


Bogle Pinot


Cartlidge & Browne Pinot Noir 2014 – California –  $11.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 87  /  Vivino = 3.7 out of 5




Cloud Break Pinot Noir 2014 – California –  $8.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 87  /  Vivino = 3.2 out of 5


Cloud Break Pinot


 D’Autrefois Pinot Noir 2014 – Languedoc Roussillon, France –  $9.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 86  /  Vivino = 3.7 out of 5

D Autrefois Pinot


 Five Branches Pinot Noir NV– California –  $7.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 86  /  Vivino = 3.5 out of 5

Five Branches Pinot


Forever Vineyards Pinot Noir 2013 – Lodi, California –  $8.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 86  /  Vivino = 3.5 out of 5


Forever Pinot


McManis Family Vineyards Pinot Noir 2015 – California –  $9.79 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 90  /  Vivino = 3.7 out of 5


McManis Pinot


Rex Goliath 47 Pound Rooster Pinot Noir NV –  Central Coast, California –  $6.99 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 79  /  Vivino = 3.1 out of 5


Rex Goliath Pinot


Underwood Pinot Noir 2015 – Oregon –  $8.47 at TotalWine

CellarTracker = 86  /  Vivino = 3.5 out of 5




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