Relic Wine Cellars Ritual 2018  Front Label
Relic Wine Cellars Ritual 2018  Front LabelRelic Wine Cellars Ritual 2018  Front Bottle Shot

Relic Wine Cellars Ritual 2018

  • JD93
  • RP93
  • WS92
750ML / 0% ABV
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  • JS92
  • JD95
  • WS94
  • RP93
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750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

2018 Ritual will delight fans of this wine, which Relic has been making since 2007 as an homage to the pioneering, immigrant families who introduced these grapes to Napa Valley. The fruit-forward character of the year has brought tons of high-toned fruit and spice aromatics of strawberry jam, raspberry coulis, five-spice, a dusting of white pepper, underbrush and sage to the glass. On the palate, the classic up valley richness and depth is there, with a lot power in reserve, but on a gorgeously juicy frame. Flavors of blackberry, oolong tea and damson plum abound and play off one another on the long, silky finish. Aged in mostly neutral French oak barrels for 19 months before bottling unfiltered.

Blend: 33% Grenache, 33% Carignane, 25% Syrah, 9% Petite Sirah

Critical Acclaim

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JD 93
Jeb Dunnuck
The 300-case 2018 Ritual Red Blend checks in a one-third Grenache, one-third Carignan, and the balance Syrah and Petite Sirah, all fermented and aged in neutral barrels. Lots of blue fruits, charred meat, violet, graphite, and peppery notes emerge from this medium-bodied, elegant red blend that has impressive tannins as well as balance. It’s ideal for enjoying over the coming 7-8 years as well.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Composed of 33% Grenache, 33% Carignane, 25% Syrah and 9% Petite Sirah, the 2018 Ritual Heritage Blend is deep garnet-purple in color, giving up floral notes of dried roses and lilacs over a core of ripe blackberries, plum preserves, fruitcake and smoked meats plus a waft of tilled soil. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated, it has a firm, grainy texture supporting the generous black fruit flavors and a long, uplifting finish.
Rating: 93+
WS 92
Wine Spectator
Combines suppleness with a core of simmering power, offering elegant tiers of raspberry, grilled garrigue and spiced smoke beef that build toward medium-grained tannins. Grenache, Carignane, Syrah and Petite Sirah.
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Relic Wine Cellars

Relic Wine Cellars

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Relic Wine Cellars, California
Relic Wine Cellars Relic Wine Cellars Winery Image

Relic was founded in Napa Valley in 2001 by husband and wife team Michael Hirby and Schatzi

Throckmorton, with a focus on historic winemaking techniques. Inspired by a love of Burgundy, they began making a small amount of Pinot Noir, and have since continued to mine history for old secrets in the making of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from the Sonoma Coast as well as Rhone and Bordeaux varietals from the Napa Valley, where their hillside cave winery is located.

When highly natural, traditional methods such as indigenous yeast fermentation, whole-cluster

fermentation, extended lees ageing, minimal-intervention, etc. - are applied to California’s great terroirs, the resulting wines are world-class, complex, layered, and vibrantly aromatic. The diverse vineyard sources are tended with the utmost care, and are always grown to Relic’s specifications of yield, light exposure, irrigation, etc.

After gaining a degree in Philosophy from Colorado College, Michael worked for 2 years as a

sommelier. Before moving to Napa Valley., he spent an extended period tasting with winemakers in France, where he learned that some contemporary winemaking rules are meant to be broken, and his traditional approach became entrenched. Michael is currently the consulting winemaker for D.R. Stephens Estate, Husic Family Vineyards, Sarocka Estate, Wolf Family Vineyards, Flint Knoll, and MAZE, and was the consulting winemaker at Realm Cellars for 8 years.

Schatzi gained a degree in History from Northwestern before moving to Napa Valley in 1999 to work harvest. Her skills were soon recognized, and she has been busy ever since. Schatzi is the Business Manager for Behrens Family Winery, where she has been for 17 years.

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Undoubtedly proving its merit over and over, Napa Valley is a now a leading force in the world of prestigious red wine regions. Though Cabernet Sauvignon dominates Napa Valley, other red varieties certainly thrive here. Important but often overlooked include Merlot and other Bordeaux varieties well-regarded on their own as well as for their blending capacities. Very old vine Zinfandel represents an important historical stronghold for the region and Pinot noir is produced in the cooler southern parts, close to the San Pablo Bay.

Perfectly situated running north to south, the valley acts as a corridor, pulling cool, moist air up from the San Pablo Bay in the evenings during the hot days of the growing season, which leads to even and slow grape ripening. Furthermore the valley claims over 100 soil variations including layers of volcanic, gravel, sand and silt—a combination excellent for world-class red wine production.

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PDXFL871947_2018 Item# 871947

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