2007 Joseph Phelps "Backus" Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon
*Three stars* This bottling plays the slightly bigger brother to the more refined Insignia below, but it too is driven by an altogether impressive sense of careful winemaking and comes equipped with a keenly focused, precise, riveting personality keyed on deep, compelling wonderfully concentrated black currant fruit juxtaposed against wholly complementary oak spice. It steers clear of coarseness, yet it is high in very firm and tailored structural tannins, and it is to be laid away for a decade please. It should last two decades and will not surprise us if it is still alive and going strong even at that point.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Backus Vineyard boasts a stunningly pure nose of blueberries and blackberries with notions of toast and flowers in the background. Thefloral nature of the fruit only adds to the wine’s complexity. Full-bodied but civilized, this wine’s tannins can be borderline rustic, but that’s not an issue with this glorious, full-bodied, opulent 2007 Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. Drink it over the next three decades. (RP)
A complex nose of flowers, grilled meats, currants, and dark fruits. Truly intense and thought provoking. Full bodied, with powerful polished tannins. This is elegant and solid, notes of sandalwood and blue slate on the finish. 1,000 cases made and only available at the winery.
A stylish, elegant youngster, with vivid mocha-covered raspberry, blackberry, red and black licorice flavors. Full-bodied and notably complex, tight and focused, ending with a persistent beam of flavors and firm tannins, with a dash of tobacco and cedar. Best from 2011 through 2022. (JL)
*Cellar Selection* Shows the Bacchus profile of ripe blackberry and cassis fruit, pure, strong tannins and exceptional balance. It’s a dry, classically structured Cabernet of enormous complexity and interest. So delicious now, it’s tempting to drink, but it’s way too young. This is a wine to cellar, and it should blossom over the next 20 years.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Full ruby. Plum liqueur and chocolate on the nose. Supple on entry, then quite backward in the middle, showing a restrained sweetness and a distinctly savory character. Finishes with substantial toothcoating tannins. Essentially suave wine but in need of at least five or six years of cellaring. (ST)