“People are looking to enjoy luxury in more accessible guises and at cheaper prices.” So said research company Mintel’s senior food and drink analyst in a recent interview with The Telegraph. With the credit crunch not so much biting as constantly gnawing, this might ring a bell with you.
One effect of our general pecuniary caution is that Champagne sales are falling, while purchases of sparkling wine – mainly Prosecco and Cava – are rising. Rising dramatically in fact – by around 50% over the last five years. While I’ve recently reviewed a couple of really good, affordable Champagnes (Les Pionniers from the Co-op and Philizot et Fils from Aldi), now it’s the turn of luxury in an “accessible guise” with Gran Tradicion Cava Brut NV.
This Cava is made by Marqués de Monistrol, one of the leading sparkling wine producers in Spain. It’s a blend of the typical Cava grapes Macabeo (45%), Parellada (35%) and Xarello (20%). Like Champagne, you’ll recall that Cava is made in the traditional method and has a second fermentation in bottle.
This fizz is a bright yellow-gold colour with lively bubbles. It has apple and delicate floral aromas. The Analyst said they could smell star fruit, which when challenged they said yes they had sniffed one recently and could recall the scent accurately. There’s obviously been lunchtime consumption of posh fruit salad going on amongst the spreadsheets!
Taste-wise this Cava is really citrusy. It’s got a lemon or lime zest tang, with great refreshing acidity. The last Cavas I reviewed were too acidic; this is much more balanced. This is not a complex sparkling wine, like a vintage Champagne, but it’s limeyness does linger. Straightforwardly quaffable, I’d enjoy a glass of this as an aperitif.
Gran Tradicion Cava Brut NV is available at the Co-operative priced £11.99. It would be a fair buy for this amount; but it’s a really good buy while on offer at £5.99. The reduced price will be available until September 4. So we can raise a glass for the bank holiday or the start of the Paralympics.
W.O.W. Factor 6.5