This has quickly become our go-to PetNat. So many sparkling in the category can have a shy nose or be weird and funky. This is beautifully expressive, bursting out of the glass with fruity floral notes of watermelon candy and cherry. Keep a few more on hand than you think you need, because it goes down way too easy.
"The wines of François and Julien Pinon are considered among the finest of Vouvray. François, a former child psychologist, took over the estate from his father in 1987, and has steadily made a name for the estate. He is a serious winemaker whose main focus is "to keep the typicity of both the appellation and the vintage" in all his wines. Julien's arrival has cemented the family's dedication to organic viticulture and minimal intervention winemaking.
The vineyards are in the corniche of the Vallée de Cousse. The soil is clay and silica on a base of limestone (tuffeau) with flint (silex) and the area is rated among the top sites in the appellation for Vouvrays of distinction and long life. The Pinon follow a discipline of plowing the vineyards, not using chemical fertilizers and pesticides and, of course, he harvesting by hand and uses not using cultured yeasts in the cellar. All new plantings are done by selection massale and no nursery clones are used; the vines are an average of 25 years old. The estate has been certified organic since 2011.
The alcoholic fermentation occurs in wood barrels. Then the wines are aged in stainless steel or foudres (big casks, about twice the size of barrique Bordelaise) to obtain a balance between fruit and reduction. There is one racking to remove the heavy lees and the wine remains on its fine lees until bottling, which takes place a full year after the harvest to “finish” the wine. Rather than use a large dose of SO2, Pinon prefers to gently filter his wines to ensure their stability and aging potential." -- Louis/Dressner, Importer