Pétillant Naturel – Perles Grises Rosé
Vin de France. The Perles Grises is a non-vintage rosé (it can be a blend of two vintages), a Pét-Nat of Pineau d’Aunis (30 year old vines) at just 11.3% alcohol. Patrice makes around 2000 cases of this sparkling – his largest production. Aged 5 to 6 months on lattes with crown cap, then disgorged. A slightly peppery nose typical of Pineau d’Aunis and concentrated red-berry flavors. Fresh and just delicious.
About the Producer
Emilien Colin started selling wine in 1900, but the family history goes back to 1735. From 6 hectares of vines, the domaine, located in the commune of Thoré-la-Rochette, grew to the current 30 hectares: 11 ha of Pineau d’Aunis, 11 ha of Chenin Blanc, 2.5 ha of Pinot Noir, 2 ha of Cabernet Franc, 2 ha of Gamay and 1.5 ha of Chardonnay. Today, 8th generation Patrice Colin runs the estate with his wife Valérie, who oversees accounting. Patrice takes care of all operations from vineyard work to vinification and bottling, helped by one full time employee and some seasonal ones. His son-in-law Florian is in charge of sales and shipping. Total production is 150,000 bottles, of which 50,000 are sparkling.
The AOP Coteaux du Vendômois (350 hectares total) was officially formed in 2001, but the history of wine production goes back as far as the 11th century. After phylloxera hit, the predominant grape varieties changed from; surin (cabernet sauvignon), auvernat noir (pinot noir), miller (pinot meunier), côt (malbec) and sémillon to: pineau d'aunis, pinot noir, gamay, cabernet franc and chenin blanc, chardonnay. There is a large cooperative producing 60% of total AOP production and only 13 private producers in the appellation.
Farming/vinification practices: certified organic. Patrice encourages biodiversity: there are 150 different plants in the vineyard. The soil is tilled for oxygenation and green harvest is practiced. The wines are vegan.
Patrice adds the following for sulfites:
Reds - none added at harvest, 2 grams/hectoliter in December after the malo, 1 gram/hectoliter in the spring, 1-2 grams/hectoliter at bottling: 4 to 5 grams/hectoliter total.
Whites : 1 gram at harvest, 2 grams at the end of fermentation, 1.5 - 2 grams at bottling: 4.5 to 5 grams/hectoliter total.