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Cava

José Raventós is often invented as the famous Spanish sparkling wine called that in Sant Sadurni d'Anoia in today's DO Penedès allegedly first produced one in 1872. But honor is actually due to others. Because around 1850 Antoni Gali Comas produced a sparkling wine. Luis Justo y Villanueva (1834-1880), Laboratory Director of the Agricultural Institute in Sant Isidre, who was responsible for some producers, also earned himself further Champagne method taught. In 1872, three of his students presented sparkling wines at a competition in Barcelona. The fact is, however, that José Raventós was the head of what is now a huge cava house Codorníu the first to be sparkling wine from today's standard varieties Parellada. Xarello and Macabeo manufactured, but only brought this to the market in 1879.

Codorníu - Entrance to the winery

Back then, the sparkling wine was named after its "big brother" ( champagne ) simply called Xampàn (or Castilian Champána). When Spain's entry into the EU (which then took place in 1986) became apparent, one had to look for a new name for legal reasons, and this resulted in the following. In Spain there is a distinction between cava and bodega, but both mean winery. But while the bodega is a simple, single-storey building, you create a cava underground. Sparkling wine matures best during the yeast storage in cool temperatures and the winegrowers have long called their above-ground products bodega wines and the underground sparkling wines Cava.

The area of origin

The EU demand for the controlled was much more difficult origin one quality wine, Spain had to define the areas. The main criterion was whether the communities concerned had a sparkling wine tradition. According to critics, the focus was not necessarily on quality. The result was available in 1992. A total of 159 municipalities were defined, most of which are in Catalonia are located. A number of them are also partly scattered in still wine areas such as Ampurdán-Costa Brava. Calatayud. Campo de Borja. cariñena. Costers del Segre. Navarra. Ribera del Guadiana. Rioja. Tarragona and Requena, Around 90% of the Cavas come from the Catalonia region and 75% of them come from Penedès. The supraregional area covers around 32,000 hectares of vineyards.

No area or municipality names may appear on the bottle label, only the name "Denominación Cava" is permitted. Therefore, cava is actually not a DO (Denominación de Origen), since it is not a designation of origin (Origen = origin), but a quality definition. The DO Penedès only applies to still wines. The remaining sparkling wines (which may not be called cava) are called "Fermentació en ampolla" or "Fermentación en botella" (analogously bottle fermentation ) designated.

The production conditions and classes

The varieties are for white cavas Parellada, Xarel • Lo ( Xarello ), Viura ( Macabeo ), Subirate ( alarije ) Chardonnay and since May 2007 too Pinot Noir, as well as for Rosados Monastrell and Garnacha Tinta authorized. At the beginning of the 1990s, Codorníu won approval for the Chardonnay variety against the vehement resistance of its big competitor Freixenet. Production must be based on the traditional metodo, i.e. by means of bottle fermentation respectively. A cava has to ripen on the yeast for nine months Crianza ) and may be on the market at the earliest one year after the harvest. After 15 months of ripening, they are considered " Reserva ", After 30 months as" Gran Reserva ". In 2017 "Cava de Paraje Calificado" was introduced as the highest cava level with particularly strict rules. These include small classified parcels, max. Yield 8,000 kg / ha, vintage cava, yeast storage for 36 months, only until brood, no rosado. The sweetness information corresponds to the EU rules for sparkling wine, The authenticity of a cava is attested by a branded star in the cork.

The other sparkling wines (which may not be called cava) are “Fermentación en Botella” (fermented in bottle for two months, after being defused, the bottles are refilled; cork with a rectangle), “Grandes-Envases” (tank fermentation, cork with a circle) and the sparkling wine "Vino Gasificado" (carbonated wine; cork with triangle). Well-known producers are Albet i Noya, Castellblanch, Castell d'Age, Castillo Perelada, Codorníu. Freixenet. Jané Ventura, Jaume Serra, Marqués de Monistrol, Masía Bach, Torres, Parxet, Pere Ventura, Pinord. raimat. Segura Viudas, Torelló, Vallformosa, In 2015, a total of 244 million bottles were marketed worldwide, with only around a third being consumed in our own country.

The association “Associació de Viticultors i Elaboradors CORPINNAT” was founded by some Catalan sparkling wine producers. After disputes with the Cava Association, they have no longer referred to their products as Cava since 2017, but with the collective brand name protected under trademark law Corpinnat,

Additional information

A detailed description of sparkling wine production can be found at champagne, Complete lists of the numerous cellar techniques, as well as the types of wine, sparkling wine and distillate regulated by wine are below winemaking contain. There is extensive wine law information under the keyword wine law,

Image: Von I, LimoWreck , CC BY 2.5 , Link

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