Joseph Phelps Insignia 2006
Wine AdvocateThe 2006 Insignia (95% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Petit Verdot; 16,000 cases produced) is a superb effort in this vintage. Another 30+ year wine, it boasts a dense plum/purple color as well as abundant notes of licorice, black currants, charcoal, black olives, and graphite. Full-bodied, pure, and rich with moderately high tannins, it represents a California version of a Bordeaux from Pauillac or St.-Julien. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2045.
Wine SpectatorTeasing with its floral, spicy cherry, wild berry and currant aromas, this is full-bodied, firm and structured, tight and focused, offering glimpses of what lies ahead with its complex mix of flavors and tightly wound tannins. Yet its finesse and refinement are apparent on the finish. Needs time. Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Best from 2011 through 2018.
International Wine Cellar($200; bottled in February '09) Good full medium bright ruby. Fresher on the nose than the Napa bottling, offering cassis, bitter chocolate and roasted herbs. Then very ripe and dense but suave, showing good energy and a slightly clenched middle palate. The tannins are serious and granular, but here there's plenty of supporting mid-palate material. Still a bit awkward following the recent bottling; this may well merit a higher score three or four years down the road.