Ahhh. The Cava caves of Spain; dark narrow tunnels, steep spiral staircases, a labyrinth that would challenge anyone’s sense of direction and filled to the stone ceiling with a winemakers dream. Even as gorgeous as the wine caves of my home in Northern California are, they didn’t quite compare to exploring the seemingly endless, channels of a Spanish Cava cave.
No disrespect NorCal. My heart will always be with you.
Traveling to Spain on a Cava tour, as a guest of Wine Pleasures, led to the opportunity to visit several of these intriguing caves. The main goal was not to get tantalized and lost in their depths, but to taste many of the bubblies that were deemed the 50 Great Cavas. I am up for that challenge.
Some Cava caves would make the perfect location to film a horror flick, while others could be used as a skilled mathematicians puzzle. How do you perfectly stack thousands of bottles of wine? Some housed the first vintage of cava they ever made, a tribute to the many more years to come. While others were more modern, projecting top notch promotional videos along a cava laced wall.
All intriguing. All unique. All a sign of passion. I like passion. Duh.
At Cava Gramona, in the heart of the Penedes, cob webs hung from the ceiling and dust layered the precious bottles that were being aged by hand. There are rooms that showcase the best and oldest of bottles and at the end of a perfectly symmetrical cava wall laid a special treat, a set table. We would be dining in a cava cave. But, that’s an entirely different story. Stay tuned.
I thought the bottles of Cava could not get anymore rustic until I walked into the cave at Bohigas, a family owned winery. Their hand-built cellar helps them to produce over a whopping 600,000 bottles.
What impressed me at Llopart was the sleek arrangement of bottles in their cave. Even though it was practical, it seemed more like a part of the architecture.
Mascaro had the most unique riddling equipment and I am using the term “equipment” loosely. To consolidate sediment, they were using a metal frame that needed to be manually shifted several times a day.
We all know how embarrassingly dedicated I am to my glass (maybe two) of jammy red wine, especially from my home in the Sonoma region, but Spanish Cava has now secured its place as a strong alternative, somewhere between Syrah and diet Coke.