When you hear “California wine,” do mass-produced, over-oaked vinos instantly come to mind? Same. That’s why we turned to a few of our favorite sommeliers for their expert recommendations—boy, did they deliver. Here, our five favorite affordable sippers that prove California’s just as hip and delicious as Oregon.

RELATED: 5 Wines That Were Practically Made for Drinking Outside This Summer (and One Costs Only $16)   

piedrasassi ps syrah santa barbara 2014
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Piedrasassi, PS Syrah, Santa Barbara 2014

Winemaker Sashi Moorman makes some of the very best Syrah outside the Rhone Valley. In fact, we’d venture to say that in a blind taste test, most people would mistake this for a much pricier bottle. Save it for your next cookout: Dark cherry, blueberry and spice notes pair well with slow-roasted meat and grilled steak. - Michael Engelmann, Wine Director at The Modern

Buy it ($24)

2016 qtr chenin blanc napa valley usa
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2016 QTR Chenin Blanc, Napa Valley, USA

Imagine a gorgeous midsummer evening, in vino form. Soft quince, honeysuckle and almond aromas linger long after you’re finished sipping. Try this bottle with crackers and soft, mild cheese—or better yet, ricotta gnocchi. - Daniel Pilkey, Head Sommelier at Maple & Ash

Buy it ($28)

liquid farm vogelzang vineyard happy canyon santa barbara
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Liquid Farm 'Vogelzang Vineyard,' Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara, CA 2016

When you have a bunch of friends over and need a bottle everyone will love, look no further than this pick. Hints of under-ripe strawberry, tart raspberry and lemon sorbet will delight even the biggest wine snob. And it’s so bright and refreshing, you can drink it all day. - Amy Racine, Wine Director at John Fraser Restaurant Associates 

Buy it ($18)

2015 sandhi pinot noir
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2015 Sandhi Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara County

Generally, elegant Pinot Noir will break the bank, but this sipper is an exception to the rule. Full of nuance (think: fresh raspberry, cola and tobacco), it has a lovely, bright acidity and a long finish. Enjoy it with your go-to chicken dinner any night of the week. - Katie Owen, Wine Director, Winc Wines

Buy it ($28)

2015 onward malvasia bianca suison valley california1
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2015 Onward Malvasia Bianca, Suisun Valley, CA

This Malvasia Bianca is intensely fruity and floral, while the palate is surprisingly clean and bone dry. And the best part? It was created by a badass female winemaker. Sip it with grilled veggies (like baby asparagus). - Kathryn Coker, Owner of Esters Wine Shop & Bar 

Buy it ($27)

RELATED: 25 Wines to Gift a Wine Snob (Starting at $20)

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