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Flat front label of wine

Kingston Family Cariblanco Sauvignon Blanc 2008

Sauvignon Blanc from Chile
  • RP90
14.5% ABV
  • JS90
  • WE91
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

While both 2008 and 2007 gave us low yields in the vineyard, the way those low yields played out in the wines is quite different. The 2007 had a steely intensity that the 2008 does not have. In its place is a somewhat more gentle quality, still with plenty of the citrusy/minerally/spicy quality that seems to be definitive of the vineyard but with a mouthfeel that is, well, softer. I think it will probably open up more quickly than the 2007 did. Like always, Cariblanco strikes me as having one foot in the new world, with its vibrant fruitiness, and one foot in the old world, with the minerally and waxy notes, somewhat reminiscent of Sancerre.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Light straw color; baking spices, grapefruit, lemon-lime; lively acidity, crisp, balanced.
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Kingston Family

Kingston Family

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Kingston Family, Chile
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The Kingston Family first came to Chile in the early 1900's. Carl John Kingston, the patriarch and pioneer, came to Chile looking for copper (good idea) and gold (crazy idea). "Gramps" Kingston was an American originally from Central Mine, Michigan, which exists only as a ghost town today in Michigan's upper peninsula.

The Kingstons settled in Casablanca in the 1920's. One of Gramps's dreams of finding the "Gramps" Kingston motherlode yielded a 7,500 acre ranch with a herd of cattle, but no gold. Rumor has it that there is some gold deep down under "the Farm", but it is apparently so far down that maybe our great-great-grandchildren will hit pay-dirt.

Through the years, generations of Kingstons have been raised in the "casa patronal" on the Farm in Casablanca. Our wine's label is inspired by this old house still standing today.

A source of reliable, budget-friendly wines and, increasingly, more premium bottlings, Chile is one of South America’s most important wine-producing countries. Long and thin, it is largely isolated geographically, bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Andes Mountains to the east, and the Atacama desert to the north. These natural borders gave Chile the very favorable benefit of being the only country to avoid the disastrous phylloxera infestation of the late 1800s. As a result, vines can be planted on their own rootstock rather than grafted. Though viticulture was introduced to the country by conquistadors from Spain, today Chile’s wine production is most influenced by the French, who emigrated here in large numbers to escape the blight of phylloxera. These settlers have invested heavily in local vineyards and wineries.

Chile’s vineyards, planted mainly with international varieties, vary widely in climate and soil type from north to south. The Coquimbo region in the far north contains the Elqui and Limari Valleys, where minimal rainfall and intense sunlight are offset by chilly breezes from the Humboldt current to produce cool-climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The Aconcagua region contains the eponymous Aconcagua Valley—hot and dry and home to full-bodied red wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Merlot—as well as Casablanca Valley and San Antonio Valley, which focus on light-bodied Pinot Noir and cool-climate whites like Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. The Central Valley is home to the Maipo, Rapel, Curicó, and Maule Valleys, which produce a wide variety of red and white wines. Maipo in particular is known for Carmenère, Chile’s unofficial signature grape. In the up-and-coming southern regions of Bio Bio and Itata, excellent cool-climate Riesling, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir are made.

Sauvignon Blanc

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A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character, Sauvignon Blanc is responsible for a vast array of wine styles. A couple of commonalities always exist, however—namely, zesty acidity and intense aromatics. The variety is of French provenance, and is important in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It also shines in New Zealand and California, while Chile and South Africa are excellent sources of high-quality, value-priced Sauvignon Blanc. High-quality Sauvignon Blanc is also produced in Washington State, Australia, and parts of northern Italy.

In the Glass

From its homeland in the Loire Valley, where citrus, flinty, and smoky flavors shine through in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume, to Marlborough, New Zealand, where it is pungent, racy, and “green” (think grass, leaves, gooseberries, and bell peppers) and tastes of grapefruit and passionfruit, Sauvignon Blanc has something to offer every wine drinker. In Bordeaux, it is typically blended with Sémillon and Muscadelle to produce a softer, richer style. In California, any of the aforementioned styles can be emulated.

Perfect Pairings

The freshness of Sauvignon Blanc’s flavor—from bell pepper and cut grass to passionfruit, gooseberry, and ripe kiwi lend it to a range of light, summery dishes including salad, seafood, and mild Asian dishes. Sauvignon Blanc settles in comfortably at the table with notoriously difficult foods like goat cheese and asparagus. When combined with Sémillon (and perhaps some oak), it can be paired with more complex seafood and chicken dishes.

Sommelier Secret

Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc is the proud parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. That green bell pepper aroma that all three varieties share is no coincidence—it comes from a high concentration of pyrazines (an herbaceous aromatic compound) inherent to each member of the family.

MSKLFK_2008 Item# 108979