The Anna De Codorniu Brut Cava is a little different from the usual value priced (I found it for $7.99, but it sells for up to $16 on the web) Cava’s on the market. Cava, traditionally, is a blend of three Spanish grapes, Xarel.lo, Macabeo and Parellada, the Anna De Codorniu is 70% Chardonnay (traditionally the main grape used in Champagne) and 30% Parellada. The Chardonnay is sourced from Estate vineyards in the Lleida region and the Parellada grapes were sourced from Estate vineyards in the Penedes region of the DO Cava. The entire Codorniu brand of Cava’s comprises 40% of the Cava’s sold in Spain by value and the entry level Anna De Codorniu holds 25% of the Spanish Cava market by sales. This is what the Cava drinkers in Spain drink and that is a pretty good recommendation. This Brut (remember, Brut means dry or not sweet, Dry indicates a sweeter wine, I know its backwards) is made in the Traditional Methode, the same process used for Champagne. The wine is fermented twice, the first time like all wines, except the wine is extremely sour (the 2nd fermentation adds sugar so the wine has to compensate). The wine is bottled and temporarily corked, but before each bottle is corked a measured amount of yeast and sugar are added to each bottle and 2nd fermentation begins inside each bottle. The wine is left in the bottle for 12 months to ferment and age, then the residue from the fermentation is removed and the cork and caged are added. This Cava has an alcohol content of 11.5%.
The color is a pale golden yellow, with a steady stream of tight lively bubbles. The nose is lemon and buttered bread, a little lime, some pineapple and a touch of orange blossom honey. This isn’t exactly a creamy Bubbly, but there is a certain smoothness to the flavors. It tastes of green apple, lemon curd, tart grapefruit and lime. The mid palate adds the taste of mineral water, along with dried pear slices and a hint of butter. The acidity gives this Cava length and structure and adds little sizzle to all the flavors. The finish will last until you take your next sip.
The Anna De Codorniu Brut is a classy, adult Bubbly. If you find it on sale, you can pick up 3 or 4 bottles for the price of one bottle of Champagne. Bubbly is all about the experience and having fun, I think you can have wilder experiences and more fun on several bottles of Anna De Codorniu than you can on 1 bottle of Champagne, no matter how good the Champagne is. This New Year’s Eve drinking like they do in Spain, just might be the ticket for ringing in the New Year.