Smoke Taint Forces Northwest Wine Maker To Table 2020 Vintage

Because of the wildfire smoke last summer and fall, the Betz Family Winery announced recently they would not release a 2020 vintage. Bridgit Griessel owns the Woodinville, WA winery, and said after a series of tests, they determined the smoke taint was just too great.

“It was a very brutal decision, but at the end of the day an easy one because we just could not release a potentially tainted wine that may show now or may show in the future, backed by analysis.”

She noted their sister winery, Oregon-based SUNU Wines will also not release a 2020 vintage. Griessel said wine taint is always a risk, but it was still a difficult decision to make.

“At the end of the day, that is just brutal because it’s wiped out an entire year’s worth of revenue so incredibly tough decision, but one we stand by wholeheartedly in order to make sure we deliver the best possible product to our customers.”

Griessel added there currently are no insurance options to address smoke and ash exposure damages or losses. 

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