2022 Ancestry Rouge Pét-Nat
- Ancestral Method Sparkling Wine
- 100% Petit Verdot
- 12.4% ABV
- Bottle fermented
- Loudoun County, Virginia Appellation
- 750 ML
- Descriptors: dark berry, sage, rosemary, bell pepper
Pétillant Naturel (Pét-Nat) or Ancestral Method is when a wine is bottled at the end of its initial alcoholic fermentation. This means that the wine is bottle fermented, this is where the bubbles in the wine come from. Pét-Nats can be hard to control because they are bottled so early and during a live fermentation, but they are a fun wine to make. This wine was made with zero additives. It was not inoculated with yeast, fined, filtered, or disgorged. Thus the sediment in the bottle.
2022 Ancestry Rouge is a brand new label for Rocklands serving as the counterpart to the Chardonnay-based Ancestry. This wine comes from a single parcel in Loudoun County, Virginia grown by Sevi Garcia (who also assists with vineyard work at Rocklands).
The grapes were destemmed and fermented on the skins (like a red wine) for about two weeks. The juice was pressed off the skins and transferred to steel tank where fermentation was monitored and the wine could settle. With just a kiss of residual sugar still remaining, the red wine was bottled and crown-capped, allowing the fermentation to finish in bottle.
In the world of wine, sparkling red wine is most common in the Emilia Romagna region of Italy (North-Central Italy) commonly bottled as Lambrusco. This is a flat, fertile region capable of producing high yielding vineyards and making relatively inexpensive wines. These wines are typically enjoyed with the fare of the region, notably Prosciutto di Parma, Parmigiano Reggiano, and various pasta dishes. While many associate Lambrusco and sparkling red wines in general as being sweet to the taste, the Ancestry Rouge is bone dry.
There were no additives during the winemaking process. The wine was neither fined nor filtered. It is also undisgorged. Because this wine was produced with red grapes, expect more sediment to gather at the bottom compared to the Ancestry.
Visually the Ancestry Rouge shows off the deep, inky purple typical of Petit Verdot.
The Ancestry Rouge isn’t overly acidic, presenting a wine that could be enjoyed on its own (chilled) or a pairing with cured meats, hard cheeses, or pastas as you would with a nice dry Lambrusco. A unique wine, as we don’t recall another fully “red” sparkling Petit Verdot in production, expect classic notes of dark berry, herbs of sage and rosemary, and a bit of green bell pepper. This wine was not disgorged nor filtered so a layer of natural sediment is to be expected.
Descriptors: dark berry, sage, rosemary, bell pepper
Ancestry Rouge can be drunk now or aged 3-5 years.