It’s no secret that we’re huge fans of Spanish produce here at The Spanish Butcher - I mean, the name clue is in the title! But our love doesn’t just stop at our beautiful dry-aged Galician beef & Iberican jamon…you’ve got to have something to wash it all down with and what better than a crisp, chilled glass of Spanish Cava?!
Whilst Champagne from France and Prosecco from Italy steal the headlines, Cava often flies under the radar, dismissed as the little brother to the two big guys…but we’re here to dispel that myth and sing the virtues of what firmly believe is ‘The unsung hero in the world of bubbles’.
So…what exactly is Cava?
Cava, in a nutshell, is sparkling wine which originates from the Catalonia region in the north of Spain. The production method used to make Cava follows pretty much the same steps from vine to bottle that are used to produce champagne, however the key difference lies in the grapes!
Cava is made up of three main grape varieties; Macabeu, Parellada and Xarel-lo. The Macabeu grape is the primary grape used in all production, it is to Cava what Chardonnay grapes are to Champagne; bold, floral notes with a slightly bitter taste. The Parellada grapes and Xarel-lo grapes each bring their own unique profiles and help add bitterness, sweetness, floral notes, zesty hints etc, depending on their combination.
Cava can be supremely dry, with the driest being a Brut Nature, yet it traverses the entire palate range with a richly sweet Dolç acting as the sweetest variation of the wine.
So, what’s our tip? Well, as with any wine, it depends on your mood, what your eating and what simply takes your fancy at that particular moment! But let’s talk about one of our all time favourite Cava’s; the Segura Viudas. Now, whilst it’s by no means the oldest Cava in porduction, it’s been around long enough to build a reputation as a show-stopping-ly good wine. We sell the Segura Viduas as a Brut Reserva, which is light, refreshing and has sharp citrus notes. Alongside that there’s the Segura Viudas Brut Rosado, a non-vintage Rose Cava with spritely aromas of strawberry and redcurrant. The flagship of this collection is the Segura Viudas Brut Reserva Herded Vintage, a truly gorgeous wine by any comparison, with a slightly nutty nose, brioche in abundance and a soft honey flavour complimented by floral notes.
So the next time your feeling a bit of a thirst, make sure you swing by The Spanish Butcher and embrace Cava in all its glory; explore the different varieties, learn it’s flavours and see if you agree with us that Cava truly is the unsung hero in the world of grapes.
Chefs tip; A glass of Segura Viudas Brut Rosado Cava goes beautifully with our 30 month salt cured Iberican jamon.