Certain memories evoke the sense of taste, smell, and at times a kid-like nervousness like no other.
Ask any guy about the process they went through while preparing to propose, get married, or celebrate an anniversary, and you’ll likely hear a story that’s rife with sweaty palms, forgetfulness, and indecision. When I was getting ready to propose to my girlfriend, I knew I would be out of the country, and I wanted to bring a special gift to celebrate what I hoped would be a successful proposal.
Like many amateur wine collectors, I keep a small stockpile of average wines for the regular weeknights, but when I’m with friends at a special dinner or occasion, I make a point to pop open some great bottle of wine. After all, a truly amazing wine adds an extra layer of enjoyment to moments like these, and sharing it friends or family makes the memory all the more special.
My search for the perfect gift (aside from the ring) to bring with us to Italy ended when I came across a very special wine that captured the essence of what I wanted to celebrate. Like my fiance, I knew this was “the one”.
Promise Wine, out of Rutherford, California, makes a Cabernet Sauvignon that embodies the spirit of commitment and fulfillment that serves as the foundation of marriage. Steve McPherson, former President of ABC Entertainment, began this project with help from the all-star team at Frank Family Vineyards, where they produce this fine wine. The brand represents “a commitment I made to my amazing wife,” as McPherson describes on their website.
The heavy bottle features a matte black label embossed with a single gold ring. Although it’s an expensive wine ($250 retail, and only available by allotment), sometimes packaging and meaning matter, and in this instance, the visual representation was a perfect fit.
I opened this bottle with three of the most important people in my life: my mother, father, and future wife. We shared it over a modest dinner at the private Italian villa we were staying in. The wine itself is remarkable, and insanely delicious. The nose brought some interesting and unique aromas that I don’t usually encounter; I’d describe them as sweet, dark and brooding, like a blackberry pie that’s cooling off in your father’s leather-packed cigar lounge. There was some definite mocha and coffee in there. If some Rutherford Cabs are known for their hints of “Rutherford dust”, then this one was packing a full on bucket of terroir inside. The dark purple hues gave way to a velvety mouthfeel and a long, silky smooth that melts across the palate, unfolding with layers of dark fruit, tobacco, oak, and sweet earth tones.
As we move through life, nearly all of our memories are framed by certain meals, wines, colognes, and other nuances that surround these special moments. A great wine like this deserves to be paired with a special occasion, and I couldn’t have chosen a better match, or a better woman to share it with. This one will be embedded in our memories. In ten years, I hope to be celebrating our anniversary with another vintage, perhaps one from 2014, when we will be getting married.