Joseph Phelps Insignia 2011
|Region||California, Napa Valley|
Impeccable elegance characterizes this vintage of the producer's marquee Bordeaux-style blend, an expert finessing of 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Petit Verdot, 4% Malbec, 2% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc. Juicy in exotic black fruit, it stands tall, with silky, towering shoulders of herb, cardamom and clove that will coalesce beautifully over time. Hold through 2026.
The 2011 Insignia is showing beautifully today. The cool vintage has given the 2011 distinctly European leanings in both the flavors and structure. At the same time, there is tons of energy and pure vibrancy in the glass. It will be interesting to see where the 2011 goes once it is in bottle, but it is almost likely to require several years to fully come together. The 2011 is 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Petit Verdot, 4% Malbec, 2% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc.
International Wine Cellar
"Good bright red-ruby. Blackberry, cassis, licorice, bitter chocolate and coffee on the nose, along with a whiff of eucalyptus. Nicely concentrated and fairly deep, with a medicinal cast to the black fruit and pepper flavors. Can't match the 2010 for sweetness and ripeness, though.
The 2011's deep ruby/purple color is followed by sweet aromas of bouquet garni, mint, red and black currants, tobacco leaf and licorice, and a surprisingly intense, full-bodied mouthfeel with more richness and intensity than I would have expected from this vintage. It is also precocious and can be drunk upon release or cellared for 15 or more years.
Rugged, rustic, tannic and chewy, this is austere throughout, with dry, gritty currant, blackberry and graphite flavors. In sync with the vintage, the tannins push back and end on the dry side. This wine has a great reputation for gaining with age, though 2011 presented unique challenges. Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Malbec, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2016 through 2028.