2014 Joseph Phelps Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1298513 93 points James Suckling

 Layered and subtle with currant, light chocolate, almond and cedar character. Medium body, polished tannins and a flavorful finish, yet this always reserved and polished. Enjoy. Drink or hold.  (5/2017)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Phelps is now producing three cuvées of Cabernet Sauvignon-their Napa Valley, their flagship proprietary red Bordeaux blend called Insignia (which they debuted in 1974), and their Oakville steep hillside vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon called Backus. The basic Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa is 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc. It saw 18 months in a combination of both French and American casks. This is their biggest cuvée (27,000 cases) and it is a beauty. The 2014 is supple, with silky tannins, dark plum, blackcurrant and licorice-infused fruit with a touch of spice, a lushness on the attack and mid-palate, and a silky finish. This wine was meant for early drinking, but there is no doubt it has the concentration and overall balance to age nicely for 15-20 years. (RP)  (10/2016)

91 points Vinous

 Once again, Phelps has done a terrific job with their straight Cabernet Sauvignon. Surprisingly delicate and gracious on the palate, the 2014 is quite feminine in this vintage. Dark red cherry, plum, mocha, licorice and dark spices build as the wine gains depth and fleshiness with time in the glass. The Cabernet remains one of the very finest values in Napa Valley. (AG)  (9/2016)

Jancis Robinson

 Very bright, dark crimson. Polished and luscious on the nose – here is a vine variety at ease with itself in this place! Neat, fresh, ripe and already accessible but with ample possibilities for ageing. All pleasure here. 16.5+/20 Points (JR)  (1/2017)

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Price: $64.99

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Staff Image By: Alex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/20/2017 | Send Email
This vintage is stellar. It is sourced from the same vines as the ultra-premium Insignia and aged on a unique regimen of half-French, half-American, half-new oak barrels. It has perfectly ripened fruit with expressive flavors of blackberries, plums, violets, black pepper, mocha, licorice and black tea leaves. The tannins are smooth yet powerful and the great acidity ensures that this gem will age beautifully for years to come.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

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.
Country:

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.
Sub-Region:

California

- 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.5