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2007 Joseph Phelps - Insignia

UNITED STATES / CALIFORNIA / NAPA
  • 98 WA
  • 96 WS
  • 94 IWC
  • 85 JR
  • Variety
    Red Bordeaux Blend
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SKU: 56214-2007
  • International Wine Cellar | Rating: 94

    ($200; bottled three weeks prior to my visit) Bright ruby. Claret-like nose offers cassis, minerals, bitter chocolate and strong soil tones. Densely packed and quite tight today, in a classically dry style. But there's also superb sex appeal and excellent energy to the flavors of plum, currant, licorice, bitter chocolate and spices. Most impressive today on the long, chocolatey aftertaste.
    Author: Stephen Tanzer
    Issue: May/June 2010
  • Wine Spectator | Rating: 96

    Firm, intense and concentrated, massive yet well-proportioned, with a dense, focused core of graphite, dried currant, blackberry, black tea, forest floor and blueberry flavors. Full-blown, finishing with rich, layered tannins that beg for cellaring. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot.
    Author: James Laube
  • Wine Advocate | Rating: 98

    The 2007 Insignia (a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot and 4% Petit Verdot) looks to be one of the greatest wines yet produced at this historic winery. Beautiful aromas of creme de cassis and flowers jump from the glass of this dense purple-colored effort. Sweet oak is present, but it is pushed to the background by the wine's extravagant wealth of fruit and full-bodied power. This is finesse and flavor authority put into a classic Napa Valley Cabernet with a seamless integration of all its component parts. Already complex and approachable, it should evolve for three decades or more, but who can resist it now? It is a staggering, complex expression of Napa viticulture.
    Author: Robert Parker
  • Rating: 17

    Vibrant cassis and black cherry fruit with a herbal note for complexity. Insignia is typically rich and opulent, though the 2007 is more focused and refreshing - delicious now and a good candidate for the cellar. (LM)
    Author: Linda Murphy
  • Self | Rating: 96

    Drink Dates: 2011-2025
    Author: Matt O
  • Self | Rating: 95

    Author: TheWineTasticWeekend
  • Self | Rating: 95

    Author: VChirkin
  • Self | Rating: 97

    Author: corvette
  • Self | Rating: 98

    Author: NectarLover
  • Self | Rating:

    Drink Dates: 2013-2025
    Author: Golf Nut
  • Self | Rating: 95

    A thick, heavy and immense wine that is profoundly tannic and obliterates the underlying fruit. However, the tannins are smooth and the fruit is there. It will likely evolve with time and improve with better balance. Score based on anticipation...
    Drink Dates: 2014-2030
    Author: botro
  • Self | Rating:

    Bottle signed by Bill Phelps (Del Frisco's NYC, April 2011)
    Author: James68
  • Self | Rating: 91

    I found it a little thin with fading fruit -- disappointing from one of my favorite wines. It was the favorite of a plurality of our group at our (blind) 2007 Napa retrospective, though.
    Author: Jeffrey M989
  • Self | Rating: 94

    Opaque, deep, inky purple. Clean, developing bouquet of creme de casis, loamy soil, hints of tobacco and chocolate. Dry intense palate of currant, blackberry with hints of dusty/smoky oak and a hint of salty minerals. A full bodied monster that seems to be in a bit of a dumb phase at present. Everything is there for an amazing offering, just needs to settle down a bit and allow flavors and structure to integrate. Ordered a half case and will enjoy its evolution over the next few years with notes to follow.
    Drink Dates: 2012-2020
    Author: SurgPA05
  • Self | Rating: 95

    Ready to drink. Not a 1997 or 2002, but very nice.
    Drink Dates: 2016-2027
    Author: jimc
  • Self | Rating: 97

    Sexy, velvety goodness that is the incredible Insignia
    Drink Dates: 2013-2020
    Author: Rmann
  • Self | Rating:

    Sold via KL Wines
    Author: elee1388
  • Self | Rating: 96

    Tasted and bought this wine at the winery. Had it tonight with dinner. Almost black in color. Aromas of blackberries, plum and coffee. Very opulent and dense. Finishes with dusty tannins that are very well integrated and not at all harsh. This is a fine wine, but is overpriced.
    Author: Litig8tr
  • Self | Rating: 98

    Visual: beautiful deep purple. Aroma: dark chocolate, floral, oak and dark berry. Palate: major depth and layering, tannins are silky, with flavors of blackberry, dried currant, oak. All of the above is so well integrated and balanced. Overall: just exceptional in every way. Worth all the big scores. Tasted along side the 2006 at the winery. We put 6 bottles in the cellar as this is our daughter's birth year. Not sure I've had anything better.
    Drink Dates: 2012-2025
    Author: Wine365
  • Self | Rating:

    Wooden box
    Author: KK and QB Wines
Since its founding in 1972, Joseph Phelps Vineyards has been on the cutting edge of many California wine developments. From the Bordeaux-blend Insignia, first made in 1974 and Wine Spectator's wine of the year for the 2002 vintage; to the resurrection of California Syrah, also first produced in 1974, the winery has earned critical acclaim for its many estate-grown wines.

California is the heartland of wine production in the US, and the state that brought prestige to American wine thanks to the pioneers who built early wineries like Staglin, Beringer, Ridge, Mayacamas and Chateau Montelena in the 1800s. Its large geographic area ensures a great diversity in growing sites, varieties grown, and quality levels. Generalizations about the state's wines have numerous exceptions; however, a few key facts generally hold true—ample sunshine, dry weather during the growing season, and moderate winters prevail. Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon continue to dominate the state's production—albeit in continually smaller percentages, as growers continue to diversify. More than 100 different varieties can be found throughout the state.

White Bordeaux blends are most commonly composed of Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc, and come in a range of dry and sweet styles. Sémillon contributes body while Sauvignon Blanc adds high acidity, a characteristic that is particularly important in the sweet wines of Bordeaux.

Sauternes is one of the world’s most prestigious regions for sweet wine production, made possible by Sémillon’s affinity for noble rot. Wines from world-renowned Château d’Yquem are fermented and matured in new oak for up to three years and can age for decades in bottle. These wines display complex aromas of melon, honey, apricot, citrus peel, mango, and butterscotch and develop added complexity and aromas with age.

The best dry wines from this blend come from producers such as Château Haut-Brion, Château Pape Clément, and Domaine de Chevalier in Pessac-Léognan and Graves. These wines are typically fermented and matured in new oak and display a full-bodied richness with concentrated nutty flavors overlaying the fruit.

Due to its freshness and flavor profile, dry white Bordeaux blends pair well with almost any white food, including all types of fish, poultry, veal, and pork. The sweet wines of Bordeaux pair well with foie gras, oysters, blue cheese, spicy food (particularly Asian cuisines), any dish with sweet notes, and of course, dessert.

Collector Data For This Wine

  • 3800 bottles owned
  • 535 collectors
  • Average collector rating: 96
    (Out of 535 collectors)