2014CrusePetNat2014 Cruse Wine Co. Pétillant Naturel, Sparkling Valdiguie, Napa Valley.
The Cruse Wine Co. Pet-Nat bubbly is made in the Methode Ancestrale, bottle fermented naturally, which dates back to ancient times, even before Dom Perignon fashioned the first Champagnes and is making a come back in both the old world, especially in the Loire Valley of France and here in the new world with dozens of small handcrafted wines hitting the market, like this crazy cool sparkling Valdiguie (also known as “Napa Gamay”) from Michael Cruse. I got introduced to an amazing array of Petillant Naturel wines from California last night at Bay Grape in Oakland, they put on a seriously fun “Heavy Pet Nat Zoo” party at their shop/wine bar, this was like a rave for bubbles freaks and a wine geek Mecca of cool and rare sparkling weirdos, I mean that in a good way, this was pure fun and all the wines were interesting, in particular Broc Sparkling Cabernet Franc, Combe by Parr & Stolpman Sparkling Trousseau, Onward Malvasia and the Donkey and Goat Pet-Nat, but if I was to have a favorite I might have to confess to this Cruse Valdiguie Pet-Nat on the night, and it will be a wine I buy, no question. Michael Cruse’s Pet-Nat Valdiguie starts with it’s cool orange/pink hue that seems to glow and draw you in, it has a vibrant fine mouse and offers up zest dry mineral notes, lively fruit and is super tangy refreshing with hints of sour cherry, citrus, exotic tropical notes and lingering yeast, almost brioche Champagne flavors plus lingering strawberry. This is not a wine to over think, it is a simple celebration with a pop top, like beer cap, that is a perfect lead in to lunch or dinner to put a smile on all the faces around the table. I love this new wave of bubbly, it is anti-serious joy in a bottle, I highly recommend checking this one out and enjoy it over the coming Spring and Summer.
($29 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive

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