2020 Cruse Wine Co, Pétillant Naturel Rosé, Sparkling St. Laurent, Ricci Vineyard, Carneros AVA, Sonoma County.
In a change up, the 2020 Cruse Sparkling St. Laurent is a Rosé rather than a Blanc de Noirs, and it is like Spring in the glass with pretty floral aromatics and a supple fruity palate with sweet pea, strawberry, red peach and zesty citrus leading the way, gaining a leesy mouth feel with air. This vintage is generous and even seems to have an off dry character, making it easy to sip on its own and good with more spicy dishes. Cruse does a fabulous set of bubbles and even does some custom versions for other wineries, like Stolpman’s Trousseau “Combe” Pet-Nat, with some interesting and rare varietals, like St. Laurent, an Austrian red grape, non too common here in California, as well as using traditional Champagne grapes, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in his upper end fizz. This light pinkish Pétillant Naturel Rosé Sparkling St. Laurent is Cruse’s most open and fruit forward version with a refined creamy mousse and is nicely rounded, without overt frothy bubbles. The San Pablo bay climate and clay based spoils bring out a rich fruit detail, but retains lots juicy acidity, making for a bubbly that is balanced and will appeal to a wide range of palates, it will go great with sunsets.

The Cruse Sparkling St. Laurent grapes were whole cluster pressed using the same slow steady cycle as for his traditional method sparkling wines. The wine was then fermented a small stainless steel tank with a touch of skin contact to achieve that light pink tint, finishing at about 11.5% natural alcohol, which left plenty of fruit and a hint of RS, helping with texture here. Towards the end of the fermentation Cruse bottles the wine where it is stored a bit before it is classically riddled and disgorged for clarity, as Michael notes, (that) there was zero additions made in his Pet-Nats, no yeast, no sugar, or sulfur added, it is pure, fermented, grape juice, and that is exactly what you taste in this expressive version. As I’ve mentioned with prior reviews, Cruse is making some of California’s best sparkling wines and is certainly gifted with Pet-Nats, and I am fond, in particular, of his Sparkling Valdiguié Pétillant Naturel, it really is a pure California treat, as this one is too, they are quality efforts. all of Michael Cruse’s sparkling wines are joyous stuff rom his super rare and luxurious Methode Champenoise “Ultramarine” to these fun Pet-Nats that offer lots of drinking pleasures at a tasty price. Cruse has just released his new editions, and from what I hear they are some of his stuff to date and look forward to checking them out!
($32 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive

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