Just so spectacular. The best of the Insignia in my view.
Very dry, tannic finish. A big wine, packed with concentrated red fruits. Still too tannic, the finish is harsh. Give it two years.
A very balanced wine with long and smooth finish. However, not as powerful as many other California cult red.
External Reviews for Joseph Phelps Red Bordeaux Blend Napa Valley Insignia
The 1995 Insignia (a blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot) is equally profound, performing even better this year than it did last. Less evolved than the 1994, the 1995 is extremely full-bodied, huge, and massive, with layers of sweet fruit. Any evidence of the winersquo;s aging in 100% new oak has been buried beneath layers of extract, ripe black currant fruit, and spice. It possesses a siky, Asian spice-scented personality.
The 1994 Insignia (a blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc ) is a killer wine. It, too, will evolve for 20ndash;25 years, but who can ignore its lavish richness, velvety-textured, well-balanced personality, with gobs of sweet toast, black-cherry, and cassis fruit, spice, mineral, and enormous concentration. Now in the bottle, this wine has turned out to be primarily a Cabernet Sauvignon as the percentage of Merlot was reduced in the final blend. It is potentially the best Insignia since the 1976.
Joseph Phelpsrsquo; flagship wine is their fabulous Insignia, a wine with a tremendous track record back to the debut vintage of 1974. A great Insignia in the making is the 1999. An impressive black/purple color is followed by aromas and flavors of melted licorice and creme de cassis, immense body, a voluptuous texture, and an opulent, multilayered palate. This is a fabulously concentrated, low acid yet super-endowed wine. It is a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 17% Merlot, and 1% each of Petit-Verdot, Malbec, and Cabernet Franc. After its release in 2002, it should age effortlessly for 2ndash;3 decades.
The core of this offering tends to come from Rutherford grown fruit. the saturated dense purple-colored 1999 offers a tight but promising nose of incense, spice box, black fruits, and vanilla. Elegant, stylish, and medium to full-bodied, it is made in a more French-like finesse style than such blockbusters as 1997, 1996, 1995 and 1994. Give it 3ndash;4 years of cellaring and consume it over the following 15ndash;18.
Very French, as in Bordeaux; as in winemaking informed by years of experience; as in a wine that will develop and mature over time. For Phelps, thatrsquo;s very Napa. The rsquo;95 Insignia is a tannic and four-square wine in the best sense. It just needs time to show what it is all about. Its complex flavor profile of anise, plum, and light mint rides over a compact varietal base that doesnrsquo;t call attention to itself. Cellar a few bottles for two to four years, then serve it with roast beef or lamb. But be sure to cellar a few more bottles to the ten-year mark. Patience is required and rewarded with Insignia.
The 2000 Insignia is a blend of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, and 1% Malbec. It reveals a smoky, rich cassis characteristic, medium to full body, and an open-knit, lush, generous style without the austere tannin and backwardness of the 1999. This expansive, fleshy, and seductive offering should drink well for 15ndash;16 years.
Almost since its inception, Phelps Insignia ranked among the elite of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Although the fruit source has varied over the years, estate vineyards Banca Dorada in Rutherford and Las Rocas in Stags Leap have provided the majority of the grapes for this Bordeaux-inspired rd bland since the early rsquo;90s. The current offering, from the monumental 1997 vintage, equals the great Insignias of 1987 and 1994 in quality.
Food Pairings for Joseph Phelps Red Bordeaux Blend Napa Valley Insignia
Dietary Information: Organic
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