2014 Ritual Sauvignon Blanc Casablanca Valley (Elsewhere $20)

SKU #1350161 93 points James Suckling

 A fresh and balanced white with sliced pineapple, apple and papaya. Full body, wonderful fruit and a clean finish. This was fermented in cement eggs and old barrels. Stayed five to six months in eggs until bottling. Subtle Chilean style. Screw cap.  (7/2015)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2014 Sauvignon Blanc Ritual is sourced from a plot called La Gloria that is situated next to a forest, which is like a natural air conditioning, on granite, mica and quartz soils. It aims at being aromatic but it's also a wine with volume and texture. After pressing the full clusters, the juice fermented in egg-shaped concrete vats, stainless steel tanks and well seasoned barriques to provide more complexity and dimension. The nose is subtle and shows incipient complexity, bay leaf, gooseberries and some herbal notes. The focus here was on adding texture -- it's not only acidity; it has certain volume, and the flavors are focused and precise. The model is Sancerre rather than New Zealand. (LG)  (12/2015)

K&L Notes

Located in the strongly Pacific influenced, cooler climate Casablanca Valley, Veramonte has accumulated serious acreage in this premier growing region of Chile. Produced from organic grapes, with an understanding of their various parcels imparted from top soil and terroir consultants like Pedro Parra and Claude Bourgignon, Ritual Sauvignon Blanc is one of the grape's top expressions in what is arbuably Chile's best region for it in the Casablanca Valley.

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Price: $12.99
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Staff Image By: Kirk Walker | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/29/2018 | Send Email
¿Un Pequeno Chileno Dagueneau? I know that is a big assertion. I think this wine rises to the occasion. This is serious Sauvignon Blanc. Aged in a combination of stainless, concrete egg and old oak the wine has a texture that is captivating.It is neither broad nor sleek and is supple and taught. The aromatics and flavors are cool but ripe there is not a green component. Just chilled peach, ruby red grapefruit and apricot pit. This is not as intense, monumental nor profound as the wine that I am comparing it to but it is at 1/8th the price... the one certain thing is that it is seriously good wine.

Staff Image By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/27/2018 | Send Email
A fantastic SB for the money, the Ritual drinks more like a $20 white (and a good one at that) than one that sells for less than $13. One of the things about new world Sauvignon Blanc, is that while the aromatics leap out of the glass, sometimes the palate lacks nuance, volume and subtlety. Given Veramonte's prolonged study of their varying soil types, the careful elevage (this is not your simple ferment in stainless and bottle it quickly job) and few years in bottle, there is no lack of complexity and volume on this wine. Flavors suggest tart kiwi, loquat, and fruits that I don't typically associate with Chilean Sauvignon Blanc. Treat this Sauvignon Blanc as you would a Sancerre and enjoy with your favorite goat cheese and a brightly dressed salad, or on its own while you unwind before dinner. Given its quality and value, Ritual will be a go to, inexpensive white for many of our customers.

Staff Image By: Joe Bruno | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/26/2018 | Send Email
Aromas of ripe lemon, grapefruit, and green apple initially. On the palate, flavors of lemonade and green apple along with fresh herbs. This wine is incredibly fresh but also possesses some depth and weight to balance against the elevated acidity. A great example of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc, and should please both White Bordeaux and New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc drinkers alike

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Sauvignon Blanc

- One of the best known "international" varieties originally cultivated in France and considered the parent of, with Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon. Sauvignon's wonderfully distinctive aromatics generate some of wine's most colorful descriptors, among them "cat pee," herbaceous, grassy, citrusy the world over. In France, the apex of Sauvignon Blanc production is the Loire Valley, in the appellations of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé, where the terroir expresses itself most beautifully through the grape. Sauvignon Blanc is also the leading white grape varietal in Bordeaux, where it is paired with the fatter, richer Sémillon to varying degrees. Relatively easy to cultivate, though more suited to cool climates, Sauvignon Blanc has made inroads in Europe outside of France, especially in Northeastern Italy's Friuli and Alto Adige, but also on the Slovenian border. These lovely wines are often overshadowed by Sauvignon Blanc's achievements in the New World, namely New Zealand, South Africa and California. New Zealand's Sauvignon Blancs, more conspicuously fruity than most French examples, landed the small island nation on the world wine map in the late-1980s and 1990s. South African Sauvignons are one of the most successful international varieties produced in that country and are often quite elegant and affordable. In California, Robert Mondavi managed to, almost single-handedly, created a market for Sauvignon Blanc by renaming his oak-fermented version Fumé Blanc. While some wineries still use the name, California Sauvignon Blanc has secured its place in the California wine pantheon, particularly those from the Napa Valley. Washington State, Chile and Argentina also have considerable plantings of the grape.
Country:

Chile

- Located on the western coast of South America and bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Andes to the East, the Chilean wine-growing climate is similar to that of California's Napa Valley and Bordeaux. The Chilean wine industry is known for being consistently free of phylloxera, but political and economic unrest has brought its own source of disorder. The recent establishment of a free market has resuscitated the wine industry, and significant investments have been made, switching the economic focus from domestic production to exports. Chile produces roughly a quarter of the wine Argentina produces, and is known for single-varietal exports, predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. It's a popular region in the U.S. known for inexpensive and tasty wine.
Alcohol Content (%): 14
Organic: