Glass of Bubbly, Champagne & Sparkling Wine Magazine
Issue 5, February/March 2015
Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut Cava, or “Black Bottle Bubbly,’ is the world’s number one imported sparkling wine. And for good reason – it is easy on the wallet, available everywhere, and has the recognizable and innovative black glass bottle.
In a similar vein, the slightly more upscale Segura Viudas Reserva Heredad Brut Cava, with its signature thick green triangular bottle atop an ornate silver crown, is equally recognizable, available, and memorable. I still try to untwist the crown, hoping this will be my lucky day. These two bubblies are bringing home the bacon - Freixenet represents 80% of the export market of all Cava.
But this family firm is actively reaching out to an ever changing marketplace with updated releases including the easy going Mia Moscato “Fruity & Sweet” Sweet Sparkling Wine of Spain, a category that is exploding in the USA currently. And, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first bottling of Freixenet, they have released a luxury, hand-crafted release, the 2006 Freixenet Casa Sala Cuvee de Prestige Brut Nature Cava.
Jose Ferrer Sala, President of Honor of the Freixenet Group, pioneered this project, re-introducing all aspects of a hand-crafted Traditional Method sparkling wine. This release is even riddled by hand. And it pays off. The cuvee is at once chalky, briney, tropical, bitter, nutty, gingery and floral. On the palate it is elegant but not understated, like the locals themselves. There is a definite sense of flair, of personality here. Layers of lemon zest, lemon bar, quince, starfruit, apple cider, pear, crushed pistachio, Marcona almond, Manzanilla olive, quinine, mineral and Bermuda buttercup keep things interesting. The wine finishes bone dry and slightly bitter. It is tart yet mellow, pleasing the palate and encouraging a nibble of something more complex than every day Tapas. This is a serious wine suitable for a main course such as the Basque Cod al Pil Pil, Hake with Clam and Parsley Salsa Verde, or Pork with a buttery, smoky, nutty Idiazabal Cheese Sauce. Let’s toast to Freixenet’s next 100 years!
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