Unless you live in a cave and have never been to Spain, you’ll be familiar with Cava, spain’s famous sparkling wine. The name actually comes from the latin for cave, Cava, which in the early days were used for aging the wine. It is more precisely a Catalan sparkling wine of Denominación de Origen (DO) status. The main grapes traditionally used are macabeu, parellada and xarel·lo although Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are becoming more popular in cava production. Only wines produced in the traditional method (méthode champenoise) may be labelled cavas. About 95% of all cava is produced in the Penedès area in Catalonia. And we are delighted to have two great cavas arrived in store today:- Rimarts Cava Brut Reserva and Rimarts Cava Gran Reserva.
Rimarts is a family business – that conserves an artisan methodology in the production of its cava. What this means in layman’s terms is producing wines in the most traditional manner by disregarding modern methodology, and thus means using the traditional methods; it also signifies having meticulous care when selecting the first must, or the run-off, in each single press. By carefully selecting the most valuable must from each particular varietal press, cava becomes exquisite.
During the tirage, or the second fermentation that takes places within each bottle, each bottle is aged patiently by hand, as in Champagne, in order to achieve Rimarts’ desired fresh fruitiness. And again as in Champagne the rémuage and the dégorgemont are done totally by hand with dedication and care. In order to extract the sediments that result from each bottle’s second fermentation, each bottle is riddled (turned while on racks) by hand for 21 days – passing from a horizontal position to a vertical position in which the lees end up at the neck of the bottle. At Rimarts, traditional riddling racks are used for this process.
Riddling serves to rid each bottle of sediment lees and therefore clarifies the cava in each bottle. To remove the sediment, Rimarts uses the traditional dégorgemont wisdom and expels the lees by hand. Unlike most cava producers , Rimarts does not use an ice plug to remove the lees. So there you have it folks a wine treated like champagne but a half the price time to flee the cave and discover Cava!