Pet-Nat – what’s not to love? Perfect for hot summer days, and balmy nights! This young, funky naturally sparkling wine variety is no-so-young at all, with its origins actually pre-dating ancient times. So, what’s with the revival and why is it so popular? Well, these spritzy wines have amassed a cult-like following for various reasons, from its unique style to interesting flavours, and simply because many Pet-Nat’s are just easy drinking varieties with guzzle-like qualities. However, many wine drinkers are divided on the idea of natural wines and Pet-Nat varieties – weather you love, or loathe Pet-Nat, the best way finding out is by trying it for yourself.
What is Pet-Nat wines?
Pet-Nat is short for ‘pétillant naturel’ which also translates to ‘naturally sparkling’ in French. This natural style of sparkling wine differs from your regular kind on sparkling as pet-net is made by way of the ancestral method, opposed to the most common format used today, the traditional method which is used for the creation of Champagne. The ancestral method creates a more rustic and cloudy wine as it commonly skips the filtration process, making it remarkably unique. Because of this however, many wine lovers despise the style due to it unpredictability, but where there is a lack of love, there are plenty of diehard fanatics who insist on the Pet-Nat way of life.
What does it taste like and how do you serve it?
Most Pet-Nat’s are fresh and lightly fizzy. The great thing is that ‘Pet-Nat’ method generally refers to the wine making style so, with this being said, it can be made of a variety of grape styles – whatever the winemaker’s heart desires from Pinot Grigio to Shiraz. Most Australian styles are fruit driven however, the most common note that ties this wine together is the texture on the palate, and its lightly sparkling nature. Pet-Nat’s don’t have the same sparkling fizz as found in Champagne, but it can be very refreshing non-the-less.
What types of food do I pair with Pet-Nat?
Pet-Nat’s can vary in terms of food paring due to range in grape variety and origin. This style of wine is best drunk whilst chilled. Some varieties go well with food, and some without. Generally speaking, if you’re looking to pair pet-nat wine with a dish, the most complimentary food variety is something fresh such as salad, fresh seafoods, sushi or light charcuterie. One of the exciting features of this wine is the versatility in taste and colour so, your can mix up styles with certain food types. Alternatively, you can enjoy Pet-Nat wine on its own.
What why is Pet-Nat wine so popular?
These wines are popular not only because of refreshing characteristics but also because of the innovative representation in the wine community. Pet-Nat is a great wine for hot summer and spring days – some if not most parts of Australia can get incredibly warm and humid. There is nothing better than enjoying a refreshing pet-nat on a warm day. Many hip bars, club, retailers, and restaurants have caught onto this trend, and you can easily find a pet-nat style in most thriving venues.
Other than its great taste, its appeal also lies within a movement. Most wine-people love hearing about local winemakers and the story that goes behind a brand. Producing pet-nat wines can be seen as breaking the status quo and producers changing the scene by deviating for the traditional wine making processes are attracting a following for the right reasons. There is a growing trend of wine lovers that appreciate the small-batch, new wave style that pat-nat brings to the table and the progressive avant-garde wine qualities that this new wine culture has to offer.