Why the Beaux Freres hate?

Femi-watered-down? Thin? [snort.gif]

I’m sure they are Belle people, but not only does the name sound like a Beaux Freres second label, but their labels are similar. I’m sure when they launched - intentionally or unintentionally (cough) - there was a clear benefit. (I noted the resemblance in OWR in around 2000 or 2001, when the Slopes were still completely obscure - so I didn’t just make this up to rile you up! Back then, one had to wonder.)

Transport yourself back to the early oughts! There would have been method to the madness!

I thought I had noticed that with Josh’s releases - it kind of surprised me given what a following he developed almost immediately. I know I’ve bitched that wineries don’t lower prices in bad years, but I appreciate a place that keeps them steady.

And get mad at Hudak - he just crapped on your whole state!

Thanks, Loren, and for what it is worth, I think your perception is correct.

So who are Belle Vallee, Belle Vida, et Fille, De Ponte, Carabella, and Coeur de Terre copying?



For the record, Chris, Brian’s first vintage was 1996 and the watercolor on the label was done by Piilani Cook the former owner, with her husband, of the property on which Belle Pente sits. Rich has it right. You really need to get a foil hat.

Oh, and “The Slopes” as you call them were hardly obscure in 2000. By then, Belle Pente had developed a hard-core following around the country.

I have to admit I’m rather surprised by how quickly this thread has spiraled down the toilet…

Lighten up, Andrew. Chris Grimm and I are engaging in some good-natured, friendly sniping. He’s mostly trying to get my goat and I’m not going to allow it. [snort.gif]

Well I would agree there is group think on the ‘good’ example. I mean these are wines of finesse at very reasonable prices, and in the case of Evesham Wood, extremely reasonable prices. Hardly surprising. Obviously there are dissenters as well.

But as Steve E said above, using the search function I failed to find the hate cabal for Beaux Freres.
I had an 02 BF Vineyard about 4-5 years ago, it seemed good in a bigger sort of style, but then I was often drinking bigger wines just those few short years ago. Really not sure I would feel the same today.

The price is the capper for me though - just not likely to try this wine again at these prices.
So I don’t think there is hate - I certainly have no hate - more like just no opinion.

I’ve had a few of those as well while I liked them I do think they need more time… [cheers.gif]

For the record, if there were more EW, Eyrie, PG, Cameron, and BH (with age on it) available in the secondary market I sure as shit would be buying it. Seems like BF, DDO, AS, and others dominate that market with some exceptions hitting up once in a blue moon. So that begs the question why so much BF on the secondary market…? [stirthepothal.gif] And so little of the aforementioned juice…

But you have such a fetching goat! flirtysmile

BTW - I loved your earlier post.

I think that Beaux Freres is kind of the gold standard. It’s got (for Oregon) the pedigree. Sure, they are big wines, but they are extremely well balanced and age well. DDO had some pedigree, of course - and they made good wine from the start. Is AS as collectible as it once was? Ken Wright is sort of there - though his wines aren’t agers, so I think they are consumed before you’d otherwise see them pop up for resale as “mature PN.” I like Ken’s wines but I’d fear the fruit was gone if I saw some old ones at auction.

Eyrie could’ve been like that, but their style went out of favor and (one can argue) that they made pretty mediocre wine for a long time. Evesham Wood - pretty obscure (in the popular scheme of things). Cameron (like Thomas) is tiny - and I never (may be wrong) see the wines reviewed. Brick House is a favorite of mine - but they aren’t so much above anyone else that I see them commanding prices that would make it worth it to sell on the secondary market in any significant way (what I really love is Doug’s cheap release - one of the best bargains for a terrific wine from OR). I really like PG wines but think that they fill a palate niche that Ken’s also fill. I wonder if releasing a gazillion single-vineyard wines (though Ken does too) dampens the secondary market because it makes it tougher for the deep-pocketed but not fanatical drinker to know on what to bid.

Beau Freres is probably my favorite Oregon Pinot. . But then again I make Russian River Valley Pinot, so I may be umm… biased.

I do think that it’s important to quantify what vintages you had and how old they were when you had them. BF can be incredibly backward if opened at the wrong time. I have found the older examples the most enjoyable thus far with the data trending towards waiting 10-15 years before actually giving the wines their fair due. While they are big for Oregon standards they are not fruit bombs. To put it in perspective it would be interesting to taste some of these wines from the early to mid 90’s with some of their WV siblings to do a side by side… Hmmm sounds like a good idea for a offline in Portland, in late July… [snort.gif]

I can understand the distaste for the wine from those that are looking for a very different style of pinot from Oregon.

The real vitriol, on the other hand, seems to stem largely from Parker’s affiliation.


  • Frank [cheers.gif]


The nice thing about Oregon is it’s possible to find 13-13.5% sometimes even 12.5% PN. A PN in CA below 14% is very rare. However, it seems that many in Oregon are making 14-14.5% PN year in and year out not just in the hot vintages like 03 & 06. I think this correlates strongly with why a handful of OR producers keep coming up over and over again. These producers are consistently producing lower alcohol wines even when the masses are following the big over oaked PN train.

Eyrie makes mediocre wine?

I’ve had the '93 BF in mag a number of times - IMO, it’s a superlative example of elegant Oregon pinot.

At least for me, Loren hit the nail on the head - it’s the pricing. If I’m going to spend $50+ on a bottle of pinot, 9 times out of ten it will be from Burgundy.

Nice to ‘see’ Frank Tota!

Last Thanksgiving (in Seattle every year with my wife’s family) someone handed me a glass of Pinot. Sniffed, swirled, sniffed again, and tasted. Fantastic. Had no idea what it was. '99 Beaux Freres BF Vineyard. Beautiful wine. Not everyone likes the same things, but I have a hard time imagining anyone not liking this if they didn’t know RP was involved.

I’ve had it twice - both times found it candied. I wouldn’t turn down a glass if someone handed it to me but it’s definitely not worth the price for me. Nothing at all to do with Parker.