Hot or cold, rain or shine, from spring to Christmas, tailgating to summer vacation – there is always an occasion for bubbles! Sparkling wines come with a wide range of flavor profiles and in just about every price range; but you don’t have to take out a second mortgage to enjoy quality bubbles on any day that ends in “y.”
These days the best bang for your buck is coming from Spain in the form of Cava. Cava is a sparkling wine made in traditional method or the “Champagne Method.” This means you get a quality wine with tiny, tiny bubbles without the high price tag.
Unlike Champagne—which has to come from Champagne, France and can only be made with up to 7 specific grape varietals—Cava can be made anywhere in Spain with any grapes that are indigenous to that particular region. The only thing that is mandatory for Cava is that it be made with the method traditional. Typically, Cava is made with a blend of Macabeo, Parellada and Xarel-lo. The majority of Cava is “Brut” (which is the driest); however, the degrees of “dryness” will vary by region, and even though the Cava is labeled Brut it may be closer to “off dry” or “extra dry” which is slightly sweeter/less dry than Brut. If you are planning to jazz up your bubbles by adding a liqueur such as St. Germain, Aperol or orange juice, I suggest that you stick to a Brut Cava. With the addition of your “sugar” (St. Germain/OJ), your sparkling cocktail may end up too sweet if you don’t use the Brut.
No matter what your party plans are here are a few Cava that are good enough to stand on their own and are inexpensive enough so that mixing it won’t give you a heart attack either:
Murviedro Cava Luna Organic Brut – This wine has a dense and fine mousse, pale yellow in color with green tones. Dry fruit character with floral aromas. It has a creamy sensation from the fine mousse, is well-balanced, with citric flavors and a long finish. Certified Organic. $13.99
Dominio de la Peseta Cava Brut – Made by a famous winery in the Penedès, the grapes used are 60% Macabeo, 30% Parellada and 10% Xarel-lo. It’s a great sparkler for every day with aperitifs, seafood dishes, mixed salads and sharp cheeses. This wine exhibits pale yellow-gold color with green hues, aromas and flavors of white flowers, star fruit and ripe citrus fruits. $10.99
Barcino Mas Vida Cava Brut – Exhibits green apple and citrus aromas. In the mouth, it has crisp, fresh flavors with citrus-lime notes and just a touch of sweetness. It tastes fresh, clean and fearless. $11.99
We at ABC believe there is ALWAYS something to celebrate. Stop by and ask for one of our “Celebration Specialists” to get you started… cheers!
Heather Burton, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits wine and spirits supervisor
Follow me on Twitter @abcwineHeatherB