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Betz Family Winery Clos de Betz 2008

Bordeaux Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
  • RP95
  • WE94
  • WS92
14.6% ABV
  • RP95
  • WE92
  • RP94
  • WS92
  • WE91
  • RP95
  • WE94
  • WS92
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14.6% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Washington Merlot shines in a vintage like 2008; the cooler, more moderate temperatures favor the development of sweet black cherry, plum and its signature chocolate/coffee note. One will likelt be struck by the dimension and suppleness of the mouthfeel.

This is what St. Emilion and Pomerol aspire to: rich black fruit, a knockout entry, plump mid-palate and long elegant finish. Along the way, mineral, spice, wet stones, licorice and dried herbs mingle to create a complex, and satisfying, flavor range. Fleshy, ripe fruits linger but the wine still dances with vitality; the higher percentage of Merlot, mostly from the Red Mountain vineyards, had plenty to do with the stunning impression the 2008 vintage.

Blend: 68% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The Bordeaux-styled wines begin with the 2008 Clos de Betz, a multi-regional blend from four renowned vineyards, and composed of 66% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 9% Petit Verdot. It was aged for 16 months in 65% new French oak. A glass-coating opaque purple color, it surrenders an expressive nose of pain grille, graphite, Asian spices, a hint of balsamic, black currant, and blackberry. On the palate it admirably combines elegance with power. It has superb concentration, incipient complexity, layers of fruit, and a lengthy finish. Give it 6-8 years of additional cellaring and then drink it through its 25th birthday.
WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
Tight and precise, with sharply defined edges, this needs hours of breathing time. Dense black fruit, pretty herbal grace notes, supple, slightly grainy tannins. Built for the long term.
WS 92
Wine Spectator
Firm in texture, with a sense of elegance to the berry and plum flavors, accented by licorice and pepper as the finish lingers effortlessly. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot.
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Betz Family Winery

Betz Family Winery

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Betz Family Winery , , Washington
Betz Family Winery
Since its first vintange in 1997, Betz Family Winery has had a single-minded goal of crafting compelling wines with individual character that are approachable and age-worthy, and wich showcase Washington as a distinguished wine region of the world.

By carving out specific vineyard blocks and being meticulous in the vineyard and cellar they are able to achieve the quality they aspire to, the result being highly-acclaimed wines that compete on the world stage.

As importantly over the years our winery culture has become a way of life in which everyone – our growers, winery team and customers are family.

Today, Betz Family Winery is headed by two families, committed to be true to their heritage, their family members and true to what Betz embodies: wines of dimension and pleasure that allow the character of Washington to shine through.

Highly regarded for distinctive and age-worthy red wines, Rioja is Spain’s most celebrated wine region and also home to whites of equivalent quality but lesser renown. Made up of three different sub-regions of varying elevation—Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa, and Rioja Baja—wines are typically a blend of fruit from all three, although single-zone wines are beginning to gain in popularity. Rioja Alta, at the highest elevation, is considered to be the source of the brightest, most elegant fruit, while grapes from the warmer and drier Rioja Baja produce wines with deep color and high alcohol which mainly serve to add body to a blend. While fresh and fruity Riojas labeled “Joven” undergo minimal aging before release, a hallmark of more serious Rioja wines is the aroma and flavor of new oak—traditionally American, which imparts characteristics of dill, coconut, vanilla, and spice to the wine. Tighter-grained, subtler French oak, however, is becoming increasingly common. Crianza and Reserva styles are aged at least one year in oak, and Gran Reserva at least two, but in practice this maturation period is often quite a bit longer—up to about fifteen years.

Tempranillo provides the backbone of Rioja red wines, providing complex notes of red and black fruit, leather, and tobacco, while Garnacha supplies body and alcohol. In smaller percentages, Graciano and Mazuelo often serve as “seasoning” with additional flavors and aromas. These same varieties are responsible for flavorful dry rosés. White wines are made mostly from crisp, fresh Viura, which is usually blended with aromatic Malvasia and weighty Garnacha Blanca. White Rioja has traditionally been made in a nutty, oxidative style, though a bright, unoaked version is currently in vogue.

Tempranillo

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Notoriously food-friendly with soft tannins, modest alcohol, and bright acidity, Tempranillo is the star of Spain’s Rioja and Ribera del Duero regions. It is important throughout Spain as well as in Portugal, where it is known as Tinta Roriz and is an important component of Port wines and the table wines of the Douro region that Port calls home. California, Washington, and Oregon have all had moderate success with Tempranillo, producing a riper, more fruit-forward style of wine.

In the Glass

Tempranillo is often aged in new oak for the integration of spicy, woodsy, and herbal flavors, often with hints of vanilla, coconut, and dill. The grape itself produces medium-weight reds with bright red and black fruit aromas and hints of spice, leather, and tobacco, with no shortage of flavor.

Perfect Pairings

Tempranillo’s modest, fine-grained tannins and bright acidity make it extremely food friendly, pairing with a wide variety of Spanish-inspired dishes—especially grilled lamb chops, a rich chorizo and bean stew, or paella.

Sommelier Secret

The Spanish take their oak aging requirements very seriously, especially in Rioja. There, a system is in place to indicate on the label how much time the wine has spent in both barrel and bottle before release, which is helpful to the consumer trying to determine the style of an unfamiliar wine. Rioja can range from Joven (fresh, fruity, and unoaked) to Gran Reserva (complex and oxidized from extended barrel aging), with Crianza and Reserva in between.

SOU325240_2008 Item# 120084

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