Coop is debonair and complicated, cheery but with a brooding underside, an old spirit with a youthful grin, the soul of straightforward elegance, a bit of a Romantic, and a man who certainly knows his dark-red velvet, especially after a 27-year stint in the crimson-draperied Cosmic Hoosegow known as the Black Lodge. And I’m sorry, but there is no better name for a guy who tends to be oak-forward.
In short: He’s a Cab man, same as David Lynch, whose Twin Peaks character (hard-of-hearing but quick-of-comeback FBI Director Gordon Cole) is not infrequently seen drinking it out of a goblet the size of a hurricane lamp.
Kyle MacLachlan grew up in Yakima, WA, and had the felicitous problem of being a high school kid who didn’t like beer (me either!) in an area that would soon be totally overrun with vineyards and wineries. So it’s not surprising that he turned to his home state when, after getting to know cult-vintner Ann Colgin (whose Napa Valley God-Food can be yours for, say, $250-600 if you can manage to get onto her customer list), he got excited about diving into the wine world himself.
Pursued By Bear, MacLachlan’s label (named for Shakespeare’s famously hilarious stage direction in A Winter’s Tale), began as a joint venture with the late Eric Dunham of Dunham Cellars, and their first release was a Cabernet Sauvignon in 2005. In 2008 they added “Baby Bear” Syrah in honor of the birth of MacLachlan’s son, Callum. (A rosé “Blushing Bear” blended from Grenache, Cinsault and Mourvedre is also available.) But the flagship continues to be the Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s small batch and a little hard to get, but if you can find it, it’s kind of the perfect way to commemorate the “aged” 27-years-later reboot of the show that changed TV forever, so consider it as a gift for the Twin Peaks freak in your life. Even, and perhaps especially, if that freak is you.
Like a Twin Peaks character, this wine ages like a boss, so if you have the ducats to get more than one bottle it should be fun to see what happens if you say to one of them, preferably backward-taped, “I’ll see you again in 25 years,” and then put it away for at least, like four. Which I say because you won’t be able to hold out, but not because it’ll, you know, peak… excuse me. Anyway, the most recent releases have great cellar potential and are actually still a little locked-down. But you will still get a lavish, layered mouthful of-yes, cherry pie, overlaid with dried herb notes and a decent ration of vanilla, cocoa and mocha. The one I tasted was pretty oaky (I think it was a 2012? Sadly, it is long gone) and liberally spattered with the characteristic toast, vanillin and caramel notes inherited from the wood.
Pair this with a binge marathon of the show you’re going to miss for the rest of your life. It also goes great with Julee Cruise on headphones in your backyard at dusk. Or, like, with a medium-rare steak. It’s so balanced it tempers the bitterness of Time, the syrupy-sweetness of Nostalgia, the astringent wasteland of Despair, the piercing acidity of Terror and the dangerous giddiness of Doomed Love, so consider it for any of those occasions.
But don’t wait for those occasions. Nothing wrong with plain old Saturday Dinnertime.