All Vintages of this wine
Available sizes

1994 Phelps, Joseph Insignia Proprietary Red Wine

  • Proprietary Blend
  • 750ML
  • WA96
  • WA96
  • WA95
  • WA94
  • WS93
  • WA93

Reviews

WA96
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, December 1998
The 1994 Insignia (a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc) is spectacular. I have had the wine a half-dozen or more times, and it is unquestionably opulent, sexy, flamboyant, explosively... The 1994 Insignia (a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc) is spectacular. I have had the wine a half-dozen or more times, and it is unquestionably opulent, sexy, flamboyant, explosively rich, concentrated, and a thrill to drink. Already gorgeous, it promises to evolve gracefully for two decades or more. The color is a healthy saturated dark purple. The spicy nose offers aromas of black currants, allspice, pain grille, and soy, with scents of a burning wood fire thrown in for additional complexity. This full-bodied, opulent, dazzling wine is exhilarating to drink.
WA96
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, December 1996
The 1994 Insignia (a blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc) is a killer wine. It will evolve for 20-25 years, but who can ignore its lavish richness, velvety-textured, well-balanced... The 1994 Insignia (a blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, and 1% Cabernet Franc) is a killer wine. It will evolve for 20-25 years, but who can ignore its lavish richness, velvety-textured, well-balanced personality, with gobs of sweet toast, black-cherry, and cassis fruit, spice, mineral, and enormous concentration. Now in the bottle, this wine has turned out to be primarily a Cabernet Sauvignon as the percentage of Merlot was reduced in the final blend. It is potentially the best Insignia since the 1976. When speaking of great red wines, what about the succession of exceptional Insignias Phelps has produced since 1991? How much fun well-heeled collectors will have comparing the 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, and 1995, and probably the 1996, in 10-20 years. The early line on these wines is spectacular, as all of them possess outstanding potential. The 1993 and 1994 Insignias appear to have an edge on the 1995, but I imagine the 1995 will perform more strongly with another 6-12 months of barrel age.
WA95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, December 1997
The 1994 Insignia is an exhilarating wine. Is it better than 1995 and 1996? I do not know, but it is unquestionably a fabulous wine. Made from a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc, it... The 1994 Insignia is an exhilarating wine. Is it better than 1995 and 1996? I do not know, but it is unquestionably a fabulous wine. Made from a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc, it possesses lavish richness, a velvety texture, extraordinary aromatics (allspice, cassis, fruitcake, cedar, coffee, herbs, and black fruits), full body, and a blockbuster finish. How many wineries can produce over 10,000 cases of a wine at this compelling level of quality? The wine is so drinkable that it is hard to resist, but it will last for 20 years. The first time I had it, I remember thinking the 1974 Insignia would only last 8-10 years because it was so supple and rich, yet it remains in fine shape today! This was one of the first wineries to produce a proprietary red wine, the 1974 Insignia, and there have been some great ones over the years - 1974, 1975, 1976, 1980, and every vintage since 1991. The newest Insignias are all extra special wines that beg for attention. Fortunately, the production is close to 10,000-12,000 cases, although because of the extremely low yields in 1996, production only reached 8,000 cases. This wine, which spends 26 months in 100% new oak casks, is a blend of some of the finest single vineyard parcels owned by the winery.
WA94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, December 1995
Joseph Phelps has been on a hot streak since the 1991 vintage, having turned in outstanding efforts in 1992, even more exhilarating 1993s, and blockbuster 1994s. The 1994 Insignia, it a blend of 80% Cabernet... Joseph Phelps has been on a hot streak since the 1991 vintage, having turned in outstanding efforts in 1992, even more exhilarating 1993s, and blockbuster 1994s. The 1994 Insignia, it a blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon/20% Merlot. I tasted through the unblended component parts, and this wine appears to possess upper-ninety point raw materials! I cannot say whether it will turn out better than the 1993 until the wine is bottled, but it is unquestionably an enormously concentrated, sweet, pure, rich wine with immense levels of extract, glycerin, and tannin, although the latter element is obscured by the wine's intensity.
WS93
Wine Spectator - Wine Spectator, November 2004
A tremendous wine that combines dark, rich, deeply concentrated flavors with a sense of grace and finesse. This is still a bold, potent youngster, with a wealth of currant, mocha, anise and sage flavors. The tannins are... A tremendous wine that combines dark, rich, deeply concentrated flavors with a sense of grace and finesse. This is still a bold, potent youngster, with a wealth of currant, mocha, anise and sage flavors. The tannins are big, too, but they're ripe and they let the rich flavors push through.--California Cabernet '74/'84/'94 retrospective. Drink now through 2010. 8,000 cases made. (JL)
WA93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, April 1996
I remember being awestruck by the spectacular richness of the 1994 Insignia when tasted at the winery in November, 1995. In this blind tasting, it was reassuring to see the wine perform so sensationally. It reinforced my... I remember being awestruck by the spectacular richness of the 1994 Insignia when tasted at the winery in November, 1995. In this blind tasting, it was reassuring to see the wine perform so sensationally. It reinforced my original opinion that this is one of the great wines of the vintage. The black/purple color is followed by an already complex nose offering up scents of cassis, licorice, spices, minerals, and toasty oak. Lavishly rich, opulent, unctuous, and voluptuously-textured, this thick, juicy, dense, concentrated wine should prove to be a crowd-pleaser when released. Although large-scaled, it never comes across as heavy or overbearing. The wine is so sweet from ripe fruit that it will be hard to resist when young, but like most vintages of Insignia, it will age gracefully for 20+ years.

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