Friday, August 23, 2019
2016 Joseph Phelps Insignia
2016 Joseph Phelps Insignia...$259.98
A barrel sample made up of 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 3% Malbec to be aged for 24 months in 100% new French oak, the 2016 Insignia Proprietary Red Wine has a deep garnet-purple color and is a little reticent at this still nascent stage (to be bottled in January 2019), opening out to reveal chocolate-covered cherries, wild blueberries and black raspberries with touches of underbrush, cedar chest and bouquet garni plus a hint of grilled meat. Medium to full-bodied, the palate springs forth with exciting energy, offering loads of red and black fruit layers and compelling herbal sparks, featuring a firm, fine-grained backbone and bags of freshness lifting the finish. 13,500 cases are expected to be made.
Rated 97-100/100 The Wine Advocate
Lovely density and intensity with dark berries, blueberries and inky undertones with hints of spice, chocolate and walnuts. Medium to full body, fine tannins and a flavorful finish. The texture and length are fantastic here. Complex. Hints of smoky wood at the end. This needs three to five years more in bottle age. Exciting wine. Try after 2022.
Rated 98/100 James Suckling
Sweet, racy and perfumed, the 2016 Insignia captivates all the senses with its exceptional balance. In 2016, Insignia is poised and vibrant in the glass, with gorgeous balance of aromatics, fruit and structure. Succulent dark cherry, plum, lavender and menthol are all nicely delineated. Today, the 2016 offers the mid-weight structure of the 2014 with the depth and darker profile of the 2015, a combination that is incredibly appealing. All of that makes the 2016 Insignia one of the highlights in this tasting.
Rated 95-98/100 Antonio Galloni Vinous Media
This is laden with dark currant, blackberry and black cherry preserve flavors, infused gently with alder, incense and black tea notes, all carried by a long swath of fine-grained tannins. Hints of warm stone and tobacco gild the finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec. Best from 2021 through 2035. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 13,500 cases made. — JM
Rated 95/100 Wine Spectator
Not yet bottled, the 2016 Insignia should match – or exceed – the 2015, yet it shows a slightly more vibrant, cooler, more classic character. Vibrant notes of crème de cassis, violets, crushed rocks, and lead pencil all give way to a full-bodied 2016 that has silky tannins, no hard edges, and thrilling purity of fruit. It’s going to be reasonably approachable on release, yet I suspect won’t hit prime time until 4-5 years after the vintage and should cruise for 2-3 decades.
Rated 96-98/100 Jeb Dunnuck