- 2020 Trader Joe’s Reserve Pinot Noir Lot #229, Santa Rita Hills, Santa Barbara County, California ($9.99 @ Trader Joe’s, California)
When not obsessing on finding crazy good wine values to feature here, I am doing deep dives into the music of rock and power pop. If you are similarly afflicted, you may recognize my “riffing” on the 1979 single Teenarama from The Records.
Fortunately for all of us, this Pinot was released some 43 years after the The Records, er, record.
And we are using Pinotrama subject line because we are mining a vein of $9.99 Pinot Noirs from Trader Joe’s and Costco over the next few weeks. Buckle up!
Some have described the Sta. Rita Hills AVA (in Santa Barbara County) as one of the world’s best cool-climate regions for cultivating Pinot Noir. Naturally, we just had to add a few of these Trader Joe’s Reserve Pinot Noirs to our cart. The rocky soils, cooling fog, and moderate summer heat produce grapes that produce sublimely ripened and balanced wines. Just not usually for under $10.
As one reviewer wrote: this is a “darn good, proper Pinot Noir.” We wholeheartedly agree! It hews closer to the Burgundian style, which is lighter and “less ripe” than many made in California. Credit the cool Santa Rita Hills for this welcome restraint. Aromas of vanilla and strawberry with notes of ripe strawberries and cherries highlight a firm backbone, while hints of vanilla and hazelnut contribute to the complex, elegant finish.
More Wine Picks from Trader Joe’s – or Costco?
If your search for this wine lands you in Trader Joe’s, take along our handy Lucky 13 list of TJ’s wine here.
And if your wine shopping excursions land you in Costco, prepare by grazing our most recent reviews of Costco wines here in our Lucky 13 list.