Bottle Notes

Betz Family Winery End of Summer 2015 Release Party

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 four years ago. Bob Betz is still the Winemaker and from what I hear Louis Skinner is setting the bar high as the Assistant Winemaker.

Betz is open twice a year for the release of their wines: Winter welcomes Bordeaux Blends, and Summer the Syrah-based wines. Located south of the Schoolhouse District in Woodinville, Betz release parties draw such large crowds that Woodinville Fire and King County Sheriff employees are hired to direct traffic.

Once again Betz Family managed to release their wines on what turned out to be an absolutely gorgeous late Summer weekend in Woodinville.

Here are my initial, albeit brief, impressions on the new releases:

  • 2013 Bésoleil – A Southern Rhone blend with a shade under 50% Grenache. Red fruits and crushed herbs on the nose. Flavors of raspberry, kirsch and pepper. I know these wines are decanted but this wine was extremely tight. This was the hardest wine to evaluate of the new releases and I reserve the right to change my score at some point. My rating: 91 points.
  • 2013 La Serenne – 100% Syrah from Boushey Vineyard. Great nose of dark fruits, flowers and game. Rich and lush. Blackberries, grilled meat and olives on the palate. My rating: 93 points.
  • 2013 La Côte Rousse – 100% Syrah from Red MountainAt first glance you can’t help but notice how dark and inky the wine is. Soaring nose of black fruits, barbecued meats and white pepper. Absolutely great mouth feel. Blackberries, blueberries and game on the palate. Stunning bottle that should age gloriously. My rating: 95 points.
  • 2013 La Côte Patriarche – 100% Syrah from Red Willow Vineyard. Opaque purple in color. Super nose of black fruits, lavender and wet pavement. Blackberries, black cherries and smoke on the palate. My rating: 95 points.

Although my scores for La Côte Rousse and La Côte Patriarche both come in at 95 points my style preference better aligns with the La Côte Rousse and as such that was my wine of the day. This reverses last year’s release when the La Côte Patriarche stole the show.

I’ve been buying the Betz Syrahs for a decade now and the wines are better than ever.

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. I would not wait long though if you want to secure a few of these new releases.

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