Joseph Phelps Backus Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1997 Front Label
Joseph Phelps Backus Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1997 Front Label

Joseph Phelps Backus Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1997

  • RP93
750ML / 0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

The exceptional 1997 growing season provided one of the longest developmental periods on record, and the wines are shaping up to be among the best in an amazing decade of quality vintages. Nowhere is this more evident than in the Backus Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. This grand cru vineyard, which typically produces wines of power and longevity, has yielded an opulent, multi-layered Cabernet with great depth of color; chocolate, berry and mineral-like flavors; and ripe sturdy tannins. We recommend at least a decade of bottle age, but if you prefer to enjoy this wine over the near term, we suggest decanting to fully release its dense fruit aromas and flavors.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
From a hillside overlooking the Oakville District, Phelps produces small quantities of their single vineyard Backus Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, which is aged in 100% new French Taransaud oak. The sensational 1997 Cabernet Sauvignon Backus Vineyard is a muscular, highly-extracted, full-bodied effort that requires 3-4 years of cellaring. Although not very approachable, it displays great fruit intensity in its huge, thick, viscous flavors redolent with black currants, new saddle leather, spice box, and toasty oak. Long, powerful, and intense, it exhibits both sweet tannin and immense concentration.
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Joseph Phelps

Joseph Phelps Vineyards

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Joseph Phelps Vineyards, California
Joseph Phelps Vineyards Joseph Phelps Freestone Vineyards Winery Video

Joseph Phelps Vineyards is a family-owned winery committed to crafting world class, estate-grown wines. Founded in 1973 when Joe Phelps purchased a former cattle ranch near St. Helena in the Napa Valley, the winery now controls and farms nearly 375 acres of vines on eight estate vineyards in St. Helena, the Stags Leap District, Oakville, Rutherford, Oak Knoll District, Carneros and South Napa Valley. In 1999, the Phelps family added 100 acres of vineyard property near the town of Freestone on the Sonoma Coast, where Phelps now grows Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

Phelps is best known for its flagship Napa Valley blend of red Bordeaux varietals, Insignia, first produced in 1974. Awarded Wine Spectator's "Wine of the Year" in 2005, Insignia is widely regarded as a qualitative benchmark for California winemaking.

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Oakville Wine

Napa Valley, California

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Home to some of the most sought-after Cabernet Sauvignon in America, Napa Valley’s Oakville district stretches across the center of Napa's valley floor and foothills between the Vaca and Mayacamas Mountains. This AVA is home to the legendary To Kalon Vineyard and Martha's Vineyard, as well as many powerhouse wineries including Screaming Eagle, Silver Oak, Robert Mondavi, Opus One, Far Niente and Groth.

The climate is generally warm and agreeable, resulting in year after year of favorable vintages. Summer days see a gentle tug of war between warmer inland air and the cool air coming in from the San Pablo Bay, creating an ideal environment to grow red varieties. Oakville's diverse soils, namely ancient sea bedrock, clay and gravel, are well-drained, and perfect for high-caliber viticulture.

Cabernet here is often bottled varietally but is also popular in Bordeaux Blends. Oakville wines are known for their silky, sensual textures, structured tannins, dark and brooding fruit and lovely aromatics. These age-worthy and prestigious wines are favored by collectors throughout the world.

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon enjoys success all over the globe, its best examples showing potential to age beautifully for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in Bordeaux's Medoc where it is often blended with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbecand Petit Verdot. In the Napa Valley, ‘Cab’ is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious, age-worthy and sought-after “cult” wines. Somm Secret—DNA profiling in 1997 revealed that Cabernet Sauvignon was born from a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc in 17th century southwest France.

ARP131532_1997 Item# 131532

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