2008 Joseph Phelps "Insignia" Napa Valley Bordeaux Blend

SKU #1075612 97 points Vinous

 The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Insignia is a towering, statuesque wine bursting with blackberry jam, tar, spices, leather and licorice. It shows fabulous depth and richness backed up by serious, imposing tannins that suggest it has a long life. Ideally, the 2008 should be purchased by those who can be patient; it is not a wine for those seeking immediate gratification. The blend is 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot and 4% Malbec. (AG)  (12/2011)

95 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *3 Stars* Once again, Insignia takes it accustomed place near the very head of the class, and, as usual, it is one of the most polished and well-balanced Cabernets to be had. That is not to say that it in any way lacks for authority, richness or size, for it is an intense and impressively filled wine, and it vies for top honors in a vintage that has provided more than a few noteworthy wines. It drives home the point that big wines can be wonderfully balanced, and, while delicious even now, it will not reach its peak for a good many years to come.  (12/2011)

95 points James Suckling

 What a wonderful wine here. The nose shows a fabulous combination of dark fruits, chocolate, spices and caramel. The palate is silky textured with lots of ripe yet beautiful fruit and super silky, tight tannins This is a balanced wine with all the potential to age for decades.  (6/2011)

94 points Wine Spectator

 Dense and chewy, this is very tight and closed, but the glimpses of fruit offer tight mineral, crushed rock, graphite, dried currant, cedar and anise. Full-bodied and way too young to drink now, this needs time, but should provide years of rewarding drinking. Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, and Merlot. Best from 2014 through 2026.  (11/2011)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2008 reveals an opaque purple color in addition to blueberry and blackberry fruit notes intermixed with incense and violets. Barely approaching adolescence, it is still a grapy, primary, full-bodied beauty that will benefit from another 4-5 years of cellaring. It should drink well for 20-25 years. (RP)  (11/2013)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Full medium ruby. Black fruits, minerals, licorice, tar, menthol and sweet oak on the nose. Sweet and creamy on entry, then quite penetrating and tight in the mid-palate, showing a medicinal reserve for the vintage. A backward and rather powerful Insignia with the structure to require, and reward, considerable aging. 93+ (ST)  (6/2011)

93 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Cellar Selection* A glamorous wine, rich and complex, with lots going on. Lacks perhaps some of the depth of, say, the '03 and '04, more on a par with the 2007, but still a very fine Insignia. With rich blackberry and cassis flavors wrapped into thick tannins and fine new oak sweetness, it's nowhere ready to drink now.  (12/2011)

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Price: $199.99
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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.