7 things you should know about Cava

Once referred to as “Spanish Champagne”, Cava is far from dependent on associations with French fizz having carved a respected reputation of its own.


Cordoniu’s cellars

Prosecco might be setting the sparkling world alight, but Cava is not to be over looked with domestic sales of the Spanish sparkler growing for the first time in two years in 2014 to 87.6 million – a rise of 7.54%. Releasing its most recent figures earlier this month Pedro Bonet, chairman of the Cava Regulatory Board, stressed the “excellent recovery” of the domestic market for Cava, pointing also to the sector’s commitment to premium Cava in both the domestic and international markets. Indeed, Cava is on the brink of introducing a new top-level tier just for sparkling wine made from single vineyard which will be named Cava de Paraje Calificado (Qualified Single Estate Cava)The designation guarantees that the Cava is made using grapes sourced from a particular site, which will be classified according to its “unique climate and soil characteristics”.

Such progression seeks to push Cava upmarket and boost the region’s exports, particularly to EU countries which continued to lead sales in 2014 accounting for 72% of international sales. The EU as a whole experienced a 5.3% drop in Cava imports in 2013, blamed largely on a decline in the German market, which despite a drop maintained its position as the biggest consumer of Cava importing with 30.5 million bottles. Following Germany is Belgium which imported 30.4 million bottles – an increase of 11.68% – while the UK ranked third with sales of 28.8 million bottles.

As the region readies itself for an upmarket push, db has rounded up some key facts for navigating Spain’s sparkler.

Click though for a crash course on Cava…

4 Responses to “7 things you should know about Cava”

  1. I know a guy who once worked with the Freixenet company and he was told (by the boss, indeed) that the way to serve Cava was to chill it so much that ice crystals formed in the glass as you poured it. Which is terrific if you’re in, say, Madrid, on a hot June night, less so in England in winter. Still, my routine is to get the product down to a hairsbreadth above absolute zero, and what do I find but a nice prickly mousse, followed by a hint of burnt caramel on the tongue, then a ferocious poof as it expands rapidly across the floor of the mouth like a CO2 fire extinguisher, leaving only a chesty rasp in its wake. It passes the time very agreeably, especially when you consider what you pay.

  2. Regard the above comment with suspicion. For CJ, any sparkling wine occasion is now another opportunity to offload some of his shoddy Cava. As he explained, the only way to make this drinkable is to lower its temperature virtually to freezing point. This renders its consumption similar to that of a Pentonville cocktail, the drink served to unpopular prisoners containing crushed glass. And many is the evening in CJ’s kitchen punctuated by the soft crumpf, not of a distantly torched car, nor of the combi boiler igniting, but of the contained explosion of another forgotten bottle of Cava within his freezer.

  3. So what are the 7 things we should know about cava? Umpteen are mentioned. Article looks like a promo for Codorniu

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