black diamond
Beaux Frères, Upper Terrace
clones | 113,114, 115, 777, 667, Pommard, Wädenswil
APPELLATION | ribbon ridge
WINEMAKER | Mike D. Etzel
HARVEST DATES | august 31–september 13, 2016
ALCOHOL | 14.1%


The Wine

Our very special Beaux Frères 60-bottle cuvée 2016 Pinot noir is a blend from our Ribbon Ridge estate vineyards, the Beaux Frères Vineyard making up 65% and the Upper Terrace contributing 35%. I planted the Beaux Frères Vineyard in 1988, a vacant field at the time that once grew annual crops like wheat or clover in the 1940s. The site is elevated off the valley floor with a gentle exposure to the southern skies. Marine sediment makes up the soil profile. The vineyard is 25 acres, surrounded by tall Douglas fir trees on the northern border. The grape composition of the vineyard is primarily the clones that my pioneer brothers planted fifteen years earlier, Pommard and Wädenswil on their own roots. Now the Upper Terrace is a 10-acre vineyard on the next ridge behind Beaux Frères, a nice walk through the forest. I purchased this piece of land from Arthur Dummer—a tree farmer from the old school—in 1999 after he clear-cut and exposed a gem of soil begging to be planted to grapes. After removing stumps and building a set of terraces, we planted five different Dijon clones of Pinot noir in the spring of 2000. Again made up of marine sediment in the Ribbon Ridge AVA, the Upper Terrace is our prized vineyard with its wonderful aromatic attributes. Blended together, the Beaux Frères Vineyard with the pioneering clones and the Upper Terrace with the newer Dijon clones provide an experience that words cannot do justice. Taste and see what I am talking about! Thank you, from Michael Etzel, the Dad…

The Winery

In 1986, Michael Etzel came upon an 88-acre pig farm for sale in the Northern Willamette Valley. After some deliberation, Michael purchased the farm with his brother-in-law (the French idiom is "beaux frères"), Robert Parker, Jr., uprooted his young family from Colorado and moved to the farm the following summer to begin transforming the land into his jewel. While planting his vineyard, Michael worked harvests at Ponzi Winery. In 1990, he harvested his first crop and sold the grapes, except enough to make one barrel, to winemakers Ken Wright and Dick Ponzi. In 1991, a barn renovation led to the creation of Beaux Frères Winery.

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