“A hard day’s night.” Review: AXR Cab Sauv 2013

Today began at 5:00AM when my alarm went off, and ended around 9:00PM when it got too dark to continue doing carpentry outdoors. In between was practice, a doctor’s appointment, a team meeting, and a lot of manual labor. A lot was accomplished, and all in all, it was a pretty good day.

At long last, we finished by laying a bunch of 1″x12″‘s across the roll bars on my Jeep and locking up the garage. We tucked away the saw and some various other tools and headed in for the day. Moments later, in the kitchen, I asked if anyone would join me in a glass of wine.

“I’m good,” my wife replied, refilling her plastic jug of water at the sink.

“Thanks, but I think I’ll have another beer,” my mom answered, opening the fridge.

“Gin for me,” said my dad, reaching into the cabinet for a rocks glass.

“Are you sure we’re all related?” I wondered aloud. And then: “I hate to open a bottle when I’m the only one drinking wine.”

“That’s why you have a Coravin, honey,” reasoned my wife.

“If having an affinity for wine is a blood thing…” my father began to grumble, then slowed, and then finished with “…that would be weird.”

My father and I haven’t always gotten along. Sometimes we do. Late at night after a long day before we’ve both had a drink isn’t our most consistently amiable time, however. Sometimes these comments can be pretty harsh. I was relieved when this one wasn’t.

“Nice recovery,” I said. Then, feeling playful: “I fully expected you to say something dick-ish just now.”

“Don’t push it,” said my mother, as my dad walked into the living room with his gin. I poured myself a glass of wine and followed after.

Family can be a tough thing. But they’re valuable. Invaluable in fact. Special. Unique. They’re the only family you have, and cliche though that sounds, it is cliche, at least partially, because it bears repeating.

The 2013 AXR Cabernet Sauvignon is a wonderful wine. I sipped at it as I sat with my wife and parents in our living room, discussing international politics and where we might go for dinner the following night. A gorgeous deep purple hue and a nose that teems with complexity and classic Cabernet nuance, the palate is chalky at first, with ultra-fine tannins offering terrific structure. Dark cherry, plum, baking spices, brighter cherry later on, perhaps some walnut, maybe a little cola. It’s brighter and more vibrant than a lot of the massive, brooding Cabs from Napa, and while I love those wines, I like that about this one. The wine just comes in waves, and drinks well, though it is extremely young. If you have a bottle, I’d cellar it personally; it has the pedigree to age very well.

On the back label, a quote from the winemaker, a man I once met for an interview who has since become a friend: “Enjoy the moments that truly matter, with those who matter most.” I took my friend’s advice tonight, and spent it with my wife and parents. Tomorrow, we’ll get up and spend another day at work, building and creating, working out puzzles of geometry and trying like hell to get along with one another. And after another day of toil, we’ll undoubtedly sit around and have another drink. Maybe tomorrow night I’ll be able to talk them into sharing some of this excellent Cabernet with me. But probably not.




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