2010 Joseph Phelps Insignia Proprietary Red Wine, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

This is made from 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot and the rest Merlot and Malbec.  Insignia is one of the First Growth wines of California.  Its great just about every vintage and has been for decades.  This one is no exception.  Inky purple.  The nose has cassis, graphite, blueberries, leather and cigar box.  On the palate, this is still young.  Medium tannins.  Great balance.  Lots of cassis and some blueberries with underlying damp forest floor.  Long finish.  Delicious.  Will work great with heartier foods and certainly with meat dishes.  The price on these is up to around $250

2001 Château Troplong Mondot, France, Bordeaux, St. Emilion, Wine Review

At peak.  Purple/ruby in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has nice cherries with some cassis and cigar box.  On the palate, some complexity.  Nice texture.  Juicy cherries with some cassis and underlying slight cocoa dust and tobacco.  Nice finish.  This is about as good as this wine will be.  Reasonably food friendly for medium and heavier foods.  

1982 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, USA, California, Wine Review

From Magnum.  This has held up nicely and is drinking well.  Like and older Bordeaux.  Ruby in color, slight bricking at the rim.  The nose is nice with cassis and cherries along with some tobacco and dust.  On the palate, this has layers of fruit and earthy forest floor.  Good balance.  This seems very food friendly.  Probably a bit past prime at this point, but still with lots to offer.  

2003 Bond Pluribus, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

This is from Bill Harlan.  At age 15, this wine seems to be at peak and is singing.  Purple in color.  The nose has cassis, slight smoke, slight vanilla and slight cigar.  On the palate, this has a nice silky texture.  Slight wispy tannins.  Lots of cassis fruit.  Plenty of depth and tight layering that unwinds in the glass.  This drinks like a almost mature Bordeaux wine.  Will work with meats and heartier foods.  

2005 Château Cos d'Estournel, France, Bordeaux, St. Estephe, Wine Review

Deep purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is great with cassis, slight blueberries, soy sauce, and slight baking spices.  On the palate, this is young, tight and tannic, but given that, it presents delicious drinking right now.  Of course, give it five or ten years and there is definitely some upside.  The palate has lots of cassis intertwined with a nice earthiness with some salinity.  Good finish.  Needs heavier foods right now.  This has another 20 years in it depening how you like your wines.  

1989 Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, France, Bordeaux, Pauillac, Wine Review

This seems to be at peak at this point.  It won't get any better not discounting bottle variation.  Ruby in color, slight browning at the rim.  The nose has cassis, cherries, slight baking spice, slight dried craisins, On the palate, there is good acidity here.  Tart cherries, cassis with underlying dry forest floor notes.  Nice finish.  This will work nicely with meet based dishes.  Give it 30 miutes of air to blow off the bottle stink and it is good to go.  

2009 Château La Violette, France, Bordeaux, Pomerol, Wine Review

09 was a pretty open vintage especially on the right bank.  At age 9, this is drinking very well.  That said, there is plenty of room for further improvement.  Purple in color.  The nose has black cherries, black raspberries, dark chocolate and char.  On the palate, this is juicy with a full bodied texture.  Black raspberries, layered with chocolate dust and slight oak notes.  Long finish.  This will work with roasted meats dishes quite well.  Another five years in the cellar and this should come together quite well.  If opening now, give it some air.  

2003 Château Ducru-Beaucaillou, France, Bordeaux, Wine Review

One of the great wines of Bordeaux well deserving of its second growth status.  This is from a very hot vintage that many wine makers had some trouble with.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cassis, black cherries, slight tobacco and slight fresh floral notes.  On the palate, this is drinking quite well.  Showing some development, it is close but not yet at peak.  Layers of cassis and black cherry fruit, with some dry earthy forest floor.  Wispy tannins at this point.  Long finish.  Would work well with roasted meats and other foods.  Some possible upside still left.  

2005 Château Rol Valentin, France, Bordeaux, St. Emilion, Wine Review

Purple in color.  This is drinking quite well now.  Pretty classic right bank but perhaps still a skosh more room to develop.  The nose is nice with cherries, some cassis, cigar box and chocolate shavings.  On the palate, this has nice cherries, not super ripe, but nothing green.  Undertones of tobacco and damp earth.  Good balance.  Drank over two nights and while different just as good on each night.  Will work with most foods.  Really everything you could want from this wine at this point.  

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