The Clos de Betz still shows the dense color saturation from core to edge of the glass. Then the aroma takes center stage, with pure, vibrant black cherries, camphor, cocoa and a slight kirsch essence. Its foundation is a classic, complex expression of Washington Merlot, but since 40% of the blend is made from Petite Verdot and Cabernet Sauvignon, the aroma takes on additional dimension of anise, rose petal and baking spice.
My tasting notes reflect an on-going satisfaction at the sense of complete ripeness for a cooler vintage: thank you, Washington Merlot. It enters very supple and plush, with a jolt of black cherry and red berries that stays true to the aroma. Dried herbs, chocolate and a touch of smoky oak play supporting roles. The finish dances with a combination of refined tannin and vibrant fruit, the signs of a successful future in the cellar.
Wine SpectatorFresh and vibrant, focusing the juicy currant and plum flavors into a bright beam that propels the lingering finish. Shades of crème fraîche and white pepper add interest. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Best from 2014 through 2020.
Wine EnthusiastBetz Family's Merlot-based blend offers sleek plum and cassis fruit, with a tart, sappy, yet penetrating presence. Despite some years in bottle, the acids seem to out-run the fruit, though that may bode well for cellaring.