I received a WineBid gift card for Christmas and was thinking of using it to pick up a bottle of Saxum as I’ve long been curious to try them out. I’m a big fan of Napa cabs / blends and tend to gravitate to wines that are big and but still balanced with black / blue fruit preferred over red fruit. Some of the Napa cabs I like include Realm, Shafer, O’shaughnessy, Carter.
Based on this, do you all think Saxum is worth a try, or are there other wines you would recommend instead (e.g. I was also looking at some of TRB’s Rivers Marie bottlings as I have yet to try those)? If yes, any views on which Saxum bottlings / vintages to focus on? I’m looking to spend ~$100 give or take a bit.
It is my opinion these wines really need 6-8 years to shed baby fat, with the occasional exception of James Berry which can sometimes show well young.
Booker is a big wine, and unapologetic about being big. Bone Rock glorious almost always. I like Broken Stones with age, I have been eyeing the 2010 but others have told me another year or two would help.
Saxums drink well with a couple years, but better with 5 and even better with 10 years. You should like them based on your preferences. Don’t know what the pricing is on Wine Bid. What are you choosing between?
Based on the comments and reviews I’ve read I’m mostly looking at the James Berry Vineyard or the Bone Rocks. Available vintages in my price range are JBV 04, 05, 06, 10, 11, 12 and Bone Rocks 03, 06, 08, 09, 11, 12. I’d be looking to drink soon rather than lay down so I was leaning towards something with a little age already. Any advice on which of these is drinking especially well now?
I’m often in the bigger is better camp, but I was really blown away by an 08 Heart Stone. Large scales for sure, but without the weight. So much complexity, it was like the flavors danced in my mouth. Don’t be afraid to branch out - all the Saxums are pretty great.
If you have a choice though 7-10 years back is a great window.
I guess I can offer one dissenting opinion. I can handle big wines, I have an eclectic palate, but for me Saxum is too much. If you enjoy Molly Dooker, Shafer Relentless and/or 2007 CdP you might like it but I’d put Saxum in this group of wines that are too big for me.
My two cents. The 2011s are of course given the year are a tad less desirable. Over the years there has been some creep in structure which shows up with the 12s and 13s. Planning to give these more time (likely the 14s too). 2010 and older should be fine now. Only have a few 2010 and older left. Had a 2010 Booker over Thanksgiving and while I would not argue if someone felt it would be even better with another couple/four years I don’t remember feeling bad about pulling the cork.
JVB and Bone Rock are good ones to focus on but I agree with the post above, they are all great.
But I think it would be worth $100 for the original poster to find out, either way! If he doesn’t enjoy the wine, it’s not such a huge investment and will save him from buying quantity of a wine he doesn’t like. I think he is being really smart. How many times have people here mentioned being on lists and buying lots of wine based on hype before trying?
On the question of which one to buy, either James Berry or Bone Rock pre-2010 should be drinking well. I like my saxums with at least 5 years of age, and find they really improve to my taste as they age. Just a question of the particular blend of syrah/grenache/mourvedre, which I imagine is available on the Saxum website or elsewhere online.
Based on the advice here I think I’m going to try either the 06 or 08 Bone Rock. I have a preference for Syrah over Grenache and comments I’ve read seem to generally rave about the bone rock. There are a large number recent cellar tracker reviews raving about the 06 so I’m leaning that way, although the nearly 17% alcohol on that one has me a little scared. Hopefully the age has mellowed it a bit to the point where it can be both opulent yet still balanced and not completely over the top. That’s what I’m looking for.