Joseph Phelps 2008 Insignia, 2010 Sauvignon Blanc

When we last sat down with lead winemaker Damian Parker at the Phelps winery off Silverado Trail in the Napa Valley, we tasted a 2005, 2006, and 2007 vertical of the iconic Phelps Insignia, one of the best wines made in California today.  We recently had the opportunity to extend that vertical to 2008, and we’re happy to report that it is the best Insignia we’ve yet tasted.  It’s truly outstanding. Our tasting note on the 2008 Insignia and, also, the 2010 Sauvignon Blanc follow.

The 2008 Insignia is a superb blend of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot and 4% Merlot, all estate grown. This magnificent wine exhibits an opaque ruby purple color and aromas of ripe blackberry fruit, cedar, cigar box and herbs. Aged for 24 months in 100% new French oak, it is silky smooth in the mouth, beautifully balanced, and has firm round tannins for aging. All in all this wine it is the best Insignia we have tasted. For maximum enjoyment, hold off drinking this wine for a minimum of five years.

The 2010 Sauvignon Blanc exhibits ripe rich aromas of pear and melon with light toasted oak. Fermented with native yeast and aged for 7 months in new French oak, it reveals a creamy mouth feel with concentrated citrus fruit flavors, good acidity and a long satisfying finish. A rich tasting wine with an abundance of flavor.

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