If you drink sub-$20 Champagne on New Year’s Eve, chances are it’s either Prosecco or Cava. So you’re probably wondering… What is Cava?
Cava is Spanish sparkling wine. Cava is made the same way that Champagne is produced, but with different grapes.
Macabeu (aka called Viura in Rioja) is the primary grape used in Cava production. Despite its importance, Macabeu tastes somewhat simple. It has faint floral aromatics, a lemony flavor with a slightly bitter finish that tastes similar to green almonds. Xarel·lo (sounds like ‘Cheryl-ooh’) on the other hand, is much more aromatic with rich floral aromas and pear/melon-like notes. The last grape, Paralleda, is blended for its ripping high acidity and zesty citrus flavors. Together the three Spanish grapes create a balanced fruity sparkling wine that’s less sweet than Prosecco but not as nutty as Vintage Champagne.