Parker noted this towering wine’s “very deep inky-purple color and nose of crushed red and black currants, blackberry pie and plums with hints of dried herbs, sandalwood, spice box and underbrush. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers a knock-out core of intense, energetic fruit with chewy tannins and a lively backbone, finishing with epic length and freshness.” – The Wine Advocate
Joseph Phelps has long been one of Napa Valley’s stalwarts. For more than 30 years, they have been a pacesetter for critically acclaimed wines. As Robert Parker wrote of their flagship red, 'The Insignia cuvée has been one of Napa’s great Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines since its inception in 1974' and Wine Spectator observed that Phelps is 'one of Napa Valley's benchmark Cabernet Sauvignon producers.' Their focus is on world-class standards, top growers and meticulous cellar triage with Insignia seeing only the best components each year. Phelps has a web of vineyards that would make any winemaker excited to go to work. The winery has been working exclusively with estate-owned fruit sources since 2004, and their specific sites are exceptional. They know every nuance of the land and can conjure magic and bottle thunder. And as evidenced by the press for the 2008 Insignia, Phelps’ continued march towards exclusively estate-owned vineyards is paying handsome rewards.
Blended of 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec and 2% Cabernet Franc, sourced from six vineyards, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon reveals a medium to deep garnet-purple color and nose of red and black currants, black raspberries and mulberries with hints of pencil shavings, cinnamon stick, cloves and vanilla pod. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has great freshness, with the vibrant, open-for-business fruit well supported by ripe, grainy tannins, finishing with good length.
Lots of burnt orange with currant and dust undertones. Some rose petal, too. Full body, chewy and tannic with lots of tension and intensity. Needs two or three years to soften but already a very impressive wine for the vintage. Drink in 2020.
The only 2015 I was able to taste from this estate (I couldn’t visit due to the fires), the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon is 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot. Deeper and richer than the 2014 with gorgeous notes of black currants, plums, graphite, toasted spice and licorice, this beauty is full-bodied, supple and seamless on the palate, with fine, fine tannin and surprising freshness and purity. It’s a beautiful, layered wine to drink over the coming 15-20 years.