Bottle Notes, Syrah

2007 Betz Family Syrah La Côte Patriarche – Bottle Notes

Betz Family Winery was founded in 1997 by Bob & Cathy Betz. Critical acclaim from local and national wine publications has put Betz Family Winery at the forefront of Washington wines alongside Cayuse, Leonetti and Quilceda Creek. The winery was sold to Steve and Bridget Griessel (with Bob Betz remaining on as the winemaker), and I fully expect quality will remain high for years to come.

2007 was the first vintage of La Côte Patriarche. The fruit is from Red Willow Vineyard in Yakima Valley. The Syrah at Red Willow was planted in 1986 making it the oldest Syrah vineyard in the state.

Opaque purple in color. 14.8% ABV. Blue fruits, meat and smoke on the nose. Full bodied with great acidity. Blueberry, blood, cherry, game and espresso on the palate. Rich and concentrated. Drink over the next 3-5 years.

My rating: 92 points.

The 2011 version of this wine was released last fall and is the best to date. Clearly Bob Betz has begun to figure out the great raw material available from Red Willow vineyard.

I’ve been buying the Betz wines for a decade now. I can’t emphasize enough that the entire lineup needs extended time in the cellar.

I understand the mailing list is full, although I suspect the wait isn’t too long. Fortunately, the wine is readily available all over Seattle almost year-round. Both of these new releases are worth searching for.

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