Some consumers favor bold red wines all year long, yet signs point to a trend toward lighter-style reds for summertime sipping. In a survey conducted for the 2023 Drizly Consumer Report, 31 percent of respondents named red wine as their preferred summer drink — ranking it higher than both white wine and rosé — potentially signaling a shift in how consumers view and consume red wine. Typically lighter in body than Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and many other red varieties, Pinot Noir fits nicely into the trending “chillable reds” profile. 

“Pinot Noir is the go-to variety for lighter-bodied reds,” says Liz Paquette, Drizly’s head of consumer insights, “and a relatively lower average unit price makes it accessible across consumers.” 

BevAlc Insights explored Drizly data for the last 12 months to determine the most popular Pinot Noir SKUs and brands, the top-selling countries of origin, and the fastest-growing wines that retailers should consider adding to their inventories. 

Rising Share and Per-Unit Price 

In the past 12 months, Pinot Noir accounted for 22 percent share of the red wine category on Drizly, which is a slight gain from 21 percent in the 12 months prior. Pinot Noir is the platform’s second-best selling red varietal wine after Cabernet Sauvignon, which holds a 45 percent share of total red wine category sales.  

NielsenIQ (NIQ) data for the 52 weeks ending May 20, 2023 shows that off-premise Pinot Noir sales declined two percent in dollar sales and 4.5 percent in unit sales over the previous year. However, the average per-unit price grew 2.5 percent to $12.64. The top-selling price category for Pinot Noir was $10 to $14.99, followed by $3 to $5.99, and $15 to $19.99.

On Drizly, the average unit price for Pinot Noir reached $20.26 — slightly less than the $20.71 average unit price across the red wine category. This reflects a three percent gain for Pinot Noir over the previous year. 

Which Pinot Noirs Are Selling?

The United States is, by far, the top-selling producer of Pinot Noir on Drizly at 92 percent share during the last 12 months, followed by France (3 percent), Chile (3 percent), and Australia (one percent). California ranked No. 1 among Pinot-producing states at 84 percent, which was a slight increase from 83 percent the previous year. Oregon was the next best-selling Pinot Noir-producing state at 15 percent share.

NIQ confirms that domestic Pinot Noir sales far exceeded those of imports during the past year, with Australia, Italy, and France as the next best-selling countries of origin.

U.S. wines accounted for all 10 of the top-selling Pinot Noir wines and brands on Drizly during the last 12 months.

Drizly’s Best-Selling Pinot Noir SKUs

  1. Meiomi Pinot Noir 
  2. La Crema Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir
  3. Bread and Butter Pinot Noir
  4. Josh Cellars Pinot Noir
  5. Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir
  6. Decoy Pinot Noir
  7. The Pinot Project Pinot Noir
  8. Mark West Pinot Noir Red Wine
  9. A to Z Pinot Noir
  10. La Crema Monterey Pinot Noir

The top four SKUs remained the same compared to the previous year’s ranking, while Flowers Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir moved up from No. 6 to the No. 5 spot. Decoy and Mark West Pinot Noir also saw gains.  

Who Is Buying Pinot Noir?

The Manhattan, Denver, Brooklyn, Washington, D.C., and Nashville markets over-indexed on Pinot Noir sales during the last 12 months compared to the national average.

Pinot Noir Brands and Formats to Watch

Though big names and California-based brands dominate the list of Drizly’s top sellers, several smaller, lesser-known brands are gaining interest from regions such as Oregon, France, and New Zealand. 

Drizly’s Fastest-Growing Pinot Noir Brands

  1. Oko (France)
  2. Rock Point (Oregon)
  3. Day Wines (Oregon)
  4. The Ned (New Zealand)
  5. Ropiteau (France)
  6. The Simple Grape (California)
  7. Elizabeth Rose (California)
  8. ZD (California) 
  9. Chamisal (California)
  10. Gloria Ferrer (California)

Pinot Noir drinkers appear to be traditionalists when it comes to packaging formats. Wines sold in bottles represented nearly 98 percent of Pinot Noir sales share on Drizly last year compared to an average of 93 percent for red wines overall. 

Pinot Noir packaged in bag-in-box format accounted for just two percent share for Pinot Noir compared to seven percent share overall for red wine. Canned Pinot Noir accounted for 0.2 percent share on Drizly versus 0.1 percent for the overall red wine category. 

The five best-selling alternative format Pinot Noir wines during the past 12 months included the bag-in-box wines Bota Box Pinot Noir, Black Box Pinot Noir, Bota Box Nighthawk Lush Pinot Noir, and Barefoot on Tap Pinot Noir, in addition to Underwood Pinot Noir in cans.