The mighty Insignia shows a vibrancy of purpose and craft in this, its 40th vintage, combining 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, 3% Merlot, 3% Malbec and 1% Cabernet Franc. Together they find a higher calling of perfumed violet, dark plum and berry along with graphite and an edginess of dried herb. Firm, structured tannins show tremendous potential for aging and decanting. This is a near-perfect effort from a blockbuster vintage. Nov 2016, www.wineenthusiast.com
Blend and Grape Sources 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, 3% Merlot, 3% Malbec and 1% Cabernet Franc from 100% estate-grown Napa Valley vineyards: Stags Leap District (28% Las Rocas Vineyard and 11% Barboza Vineyard), Napa Valley (22% Suscol Vineyard), Rutherford (16% Banca Dorada Vineyard), Oak Knoll District (12% Yountville Vineyard) and St. Helena (11% Home Ranch Vineyard).
Appellation Napa Valley
Harvest Dates September 13 - October 15, 2013
Release Date September 1, 2016
Aging/Cooperage 24 months in 100% new French oak from coopers Taransaud, Dargaud Jaegle, Nadalie, Demptos, Marcel Cadet and Sylvain before bottling in January 2016.
Winemaking Data Vineyards were carefully monitored throughout the growing season for optimum, even ripening; keeping close attention on Insignia designated blocks. Grapes were held separate during picking, sorting and fermentation.
Winemaker Notes First produced from the 1974 vintage, 2013 Insignia marks the 40th vintage of our flagship Napa Valley wine. Deeply pigmented, the 2013 Insignia opens with heady blackberry and plum aromatics laced with baking spices, cardamom and espresso. Focused and fresh, this exceptionally concentrated wine showcases elegant tannin structure and a silky mouthfeel layered with dark fruit, sweet vanilla bean, cracked black pepper and bittersweet chocolate.
Vintage Notes The 2013 growing season proved to be an excellent year in Napa Valley. It was slightly warmer than 2012, resulting in an overall earlier growing season. Lower than normal rainfall paired with moderate spring weather brought with it early bud break and bloom. Sunny skies throughout the summer months led to early veraison and harvest. Warm daytime temperatures followed by cool nights prior to harvest produced evenly ripened fruit with ideal hang time. There is great purity of fruit in the 2013 wines, good structure and overall an excellent winegrowers vintage. The first Insignia fruit was harvested from our Home Ranch in St. Helena on September 13th and the last from our Banca Dorada Vineyard in Rutherford on October 15th.
98+ Points - Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
The wine offers a stunning inky blue/purple color, a gorgeous nose of blueberry and blackberry liqueur, pen ink, graphite, new saddle leather and barrique. The wine has fabulous concentration, a full-bodied, multi-layered mouthfeel, and tremendous finish with moderate tannin. It’s interesting to note that the Phelps winemaking staff had been gradually reducing the amount of Merlot in this wine over recent vintages. The 2013 should hit its peak in 5-7 years and last for 35-50. (2016)
95 Points & Top 100 Wines of the Year - Wine & Spirits
Insignia has been built as a regional blend since its first vintage in 1974, becoming an estate-grown wine in 2004. Ashley Hepworth has fine-tuned the style, so Insignia is still a rich wine, but now, especially in 2013, shows the kind of firmness of structure that makes the richness profound. This vintage is fresh and lively, even while it is dense and powerful, as if the power is coming out of the black raspberry fruit as well as the bright, sparkling-fresh mineral tones of the tannins. Delicious now if you give it several hours in the decanter, this is destined to evolve into a classic. (Oct. 2016)