Joseph Phelps Insignia 2018 is a wine that truly captures the essence of Napa Valley. Opening with beautifully perfumed floral, dark fruit, anise, and cigar box aromatics, this wine is a true sensory experience. On the palate, it delivers a depth of flavor and complexity that is unmatched. With a fresh and focused texture, the wine has layers of blackberry, mocha, and black cherry, giving it a creamy yet luxurious feel.
The 2018 growing season in Napa Valley was unique, marked by cool and mild weather that led to delayed budbreak, bloom, and veraison compared to previous years. However, the mild weather patterns in August and September allowed for excellent overall phenological ripening, which resulted in a complex aroma and flavor profile in the finished wines. The outstanding flavor development and color were key indicators of this exceptional vintage.
This wine is a true testament to the quality of Joseph Phelps' vineyards and winemaking techniques. The seamless tannin structure and balance culminate in an uplifting, lengthy finish, making it the perfect wine for any occasion.
Jeb Dunnuck Review - Tasted 12/21/2021 - Rated 98:
The 2018 Insignia checks in as 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot, 3% Malbec and the rest Cabernet Franc, from a mix of vineyards (mostly in the southern part of the valley) aged two years in new French oak. It has an incredible bouquet of cassis, currants, dark chocolate, lead pencil, and tobacco, and while it's unquestionably Napa, it has a regal, structured, almost Bordeaux-like vibe as well. Full-bodied, perfectly balanced, and layered on the palate, with silky tannins, this quintessential Insignia is up with the finest vintages of this cuvée I've tasted and is in the same realm as the 1997 (the first vintage I bought for my personal cellar), 2001, 2002, 2007, 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2016. 17,000 cases. - Jeb Dunnuck
Wine Enthusiast Review - Published 12/1/2021 - Rated 98:
This impressive blend combines 87% Cabernet Sauvignon with 8% Petit Verdot, 3% Malbec and 2% Cabernet Franc, aging the whole for 24 months in 100% new French oak. Elements of cedar, sage, dried herb and underbrush meet rich red fruit and chalky tannins, with a dusting of cocoa throughout. Enjoy from 2028–2038. VIRGINIE BOONE
James Suckling Review - Published February 3, 2022 - Rated 99:
Blackberry and black chocolate with mint, conifer and clove. Sweet tobacco, violets and flowers, too. Some graphite. Cool and complex. Full-bodied with ultra fine, dusty tannins and a wonderful, extremely long finish. Savory and refined. A classic-styled 2018. This needs time, but is so approachable and gorgeous. One of the best Insignias ever. Alive and changing all the time. 40% Stags Leap AVA. 87% cabernet sauvignon, 8% petit verdot, 3% malbec and 2% cabernet franc. Leave this for five or six years, but so wonderful now.