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Beaux Freres of Willamette Valley, Oregon

Updated: Mar 9, 2022

Mindful Wine Journal: Producer Spotlight

Beau Freres | Willamette Valley, Oregon

Beaux Frères is an 88-acre vineyard, winery, farm and old-growth Douglas Fir forest on the top of Ribbon Ridge in Yamhill County, heart of the Willamette Valley, Oregon. Founder Michael G. Etzel was a wine salesman in Colorado Springs in 1986 when an intriguing review of a 1983 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir inspired him to take his young family to the region on a road trip. On the way, they took a detour to visit a foreclosed pig farm and the rest is history. Etzel and his family moved the following summer, and the Beaux Freres story was born. Vineyard plantings began in 1988 with Pinot Noir. Today, only 25 of the 88 acres are under vine- planted to a mixture of own-rooted Pommard and Wädenswil clones and younger Dijon clones - with most of the remaining acreage left as untouched woodlands. Over the last decade, the family began experimenting with Biodynamic farming and have found holistic, natural remedies to be superior methods for maintaining balance and health in the vineyard. They practice conscious, hands-on farming with mindful attention paid to every detail. Biodynamic teas are made from dandelion and nettle that grow wild on the property. They compost on-site, graft their own vine cuttings, and craft wines as naturally as possible, bottled unfined and unfiltered, to let the purity of terroir shine through.

What we love...

2017 Beaux Frères "The Belles Soeurs" Pinot Noir

Combining fruit from Beaux Frere's three vineyards, Beaux Frères, Upper Terrace, and Sequitur, "The Belles Soeurs" offers a perfect snapshot of Beaux Freres' Ribbon Ridge estate. The 2017 displays a luminous ruby color and sings of ripe cherry and hibiscus with darker tones of pomegranate and blue fruits. Satin-smooth in texture, this simply glides across the palate, with notes of rose petal, orange peel and savory herbs accenting a lifted finish. Supremely elegant and outstanding.

Pairing Notes: This is a wine to enjoy at an unhurried pace, as it will continue to evolve toward greater complexity in the glass over hours...opening early or decanting is recommended! With expressive aromatics, depth of flavor, and fine-grain tannin, this makes an elegant partner to duck confit, ecven better if accompanied by a harvest salad of braised radicchio with fennel and cherry.

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