Betz 2020 Non-Vintage Pt 2

Betz 2020 Non-Vintage Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. There appears to be no end to the curse of 2020. Now, Woodinville’s Betz Family Winery has announced they will produce NO 2020 vintages because of smoke taint from the last year’s wildfires.

Betz owner, Bridgit Griessel says as a smaller winery, after tasting and lab tests, their unfortunate decision was an easy one …

GRIESSEL … “For us, being a small producer, it’s just not an option to be able to see that the awareness was just so wide spread for us that we had to make that decision. So, I’m sure that there, you know, there are a lot of winemakers out there that are wrestling with their choices and options.”

Griessel says they even went through the entire fermentation process …

GRIESSEL … “So that we could learn and understand even though we knew we were not going to produce a wine, but we wanted it to understand how it evolved. And it does, it evolves very, very differently for everybody.”

Fortunately, Griessel says the industry is learning …

GRIESSEL … “I think there’s a huge amount of effort that is now being put from Wazzu and a lot of, let’s just say, testing has taken place right up and down the West Coast, you know, California, Oregon and Washington into what we can do with smoke taint into the future.”

The take away, Griessel says …

GRIESSEL … “If this does ever happen again, I mean, wildfires are in our future for sure, but there are different ways that hopefully we can treat it and work with it.”

To make matters worse, there is no insurance currently available for losses due to smoke or ash exposure in wine.

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