Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
The 2013 Insignia (their 40th vintage) is a blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, and the rest Merlot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc. This wine is aged 24 months in 100% new French oak barrels, and the production can vary from just over 10,000 cases to nearly 20,000 cases in a very abundant vintage. There were 12,300 cases produced in 2013, and this vintage of Insignia is certainly going to turn out to be one of the great ones. 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.
Antonio Galloni, Vinous
The 2013 Insignia is ripe, forward and explosive, with striking nuance and delineation throughout. Vivid and intense, but also showing admirable restraint, the 2013 is super-impressive. Twenty-four months in 100% new oak has really tamed what was once a powerful, almost over the top wine. Today, the 2013 is still closed and not fully formed, but it is shaping up to be a real gem.