See the words sparkling wine, and you probably think Champagne and Prosecco. But there's another option that's been stealing the hearts (and filling the glasses) of wine drinkers lately: pétillant-naturel, or pét-nat.
Don't know where to begin with this natural fizzy wonder of the wine world? All you have to do is turn to Kimberly Prokoshyn, the head sommelier of NYC Italian restaurant Scampi and genius behind some of the city's most acclaimed wine lists. After you pile your charcuterie plate high with your favorite cured meats and soft cheeses (the natural pairing for pét-nat, she notes), get started with one—or all—of her top picks.
While it uses the same grapes as traditional Prosecco, this bottle's natural fermentation gives the wine a gentler effervescence with fragrant aromas that "remind you of being on a hillside with budding wildflowers."
Texier, a second-generation winemaker, revitalized an abandoned vineyard in southern France, where the Chasselas and Muscat are grown and then fermented together. That combination results in tasting notes of honeysuckle, pear and sharp lemongrass.
Prokoshyn is quick to point out that this is far from your normal Lambrusco: The wine has a deep-pink hue and flavors of "sour cherries [and] raspberries with a minty finish." That essence, along with a gentle fizz, pair particularly well with richer, cured meats.
What starts off with hints of juicy pear and peach is punctured by what Prokoshyn describes as a "crunchy saltiness and a lemony freshness on the finish," making it ideal with creamy cheeses like chèvre.
Aside from aromas of crab apple, raspberry and lemon, this wine from France's Loire Valley comes with a distinct yeasty note that makes it particularly food friendly.
Want to try these wines in person? Join us at our Test Kitchen for TT Wine Club, where we're pairing these bottles of pét-nat with pizza from NYC favorite Emmy Squared.
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