Founded in partnership with Les Lunes Winery in Mendocino, wine makers Shaunt Oungoulian and Diego Roig began Populis with a commitment to producing unique and natural wines from California. Their wines are fun, fruit forward and as untouched as they can make them. Not only is this wine unique in its wine making style, but it is made with a grape quite unusual for sparkling wine, Zinfandel.
This cuvee is made from 75% Zinfandel, 20% Pinot Noir and 5% Colombard. These organically farmed grapes are then made in the style Petillant Naturel, also known as Method Ancestral. This style is one of the oldest forms of creating sparkling wines and means that the wine does not undergo a secondary fermentation like traditional sparkling wines. The result is a wine that has been left to ferment on its own with a smaller, finer bubble and often more texture due to residual lees and sugars.
This bottling from Populis is large on the nose. The dark purple flowers and black riper fruits are effervescent and fragrant. On the palate the wine is lush, dark and lively. There are notes of over ripe black berries, black cherries, and baking spices. The carbonation is light and fresh keeping the wine from becoming heavy in the mouth. There is a slight dryness on the finish making the wine have a clean, short feeling. It is an interesting and surprisingly easy drinking natural wine that pairs well with pizzas, red sauced pastas and creamy cheeses.