If you aren’t on the pet nat train yet, hop aboard with this fun fizz! Pétillant Naturel, or pet nat, is the wild side of sparkling wine and was actually discovered by accident hundreds of years ago (before Mr Merret and Monsieur Perignon made ‘traditional method’ sparkling wine). While most English sparkling wines (and all Champagnes) are made with a secondary fermentation in the bottle — a lengthy process which often takes years to come to fruition — pet nat is a one-shot wonder that only goes through one fermentation.
After the grapes are picked and pressed, using the distinctive and lesser-known Ortega variety in this case, they are left to begin fermentation naturally before the fermenting juice (soon to be wine) is decanted into bottles and placed under a crown cap. The rest of the fermentation and the glorious sparkling wine process happens completely on its own in the bottle, and so each time you pop a pet nat, you’ll likely have quite a different experience to other bottles of the same wine. Each wine is unique. And this one, made from the creative team at Westwell is utterly unique, as is the striking portrait of Bacchus on the label. Cloudy, creamy and oh-so-refreshing, this is one to enjoy with friends on a warm summer afternoon.
Point the bottle away from your face when you open this! (And everyone else’s for that matter…) Pet nat opens with a pop, so point away from valuables while opening this with a beer opener. Chill it well before serving and enjoy in sparkling wine flutes or small white wine glasses. An excellent wine for lazy afternoons in the sun with friends, and low alcohol to boot, but also pretty special with fish tacos, fish and chips or scampi.
This is not going to be like any other English bubbly you’ll have tried before, so be prepared. Unfiltered means cloudy in the glass and you can expect some of that creaminess and richness you get from a cloudy cider too. But also look out for the juicy notes of pear, apple sauce, honeysuckle and lemon sorbet. This is mouth-filling but fresh, and a surprising and eccentric wine that will win over non-wine lovers.