A while ago I started the series on the best cavas in different price ranges. The intention was to publish all parts faster but a little trip to Shanghai managed to sneek up on me. Here is however the third part. The first part on entry level cavas can be found here and the second part on the mid-range cavas here. This price range is from 200 SEK per bottle (approximately €22 and up) and more. Just a reminder that this will not cover cava sold anywhere but rather cava available to consumers in Sweden and Finland.
When creeping up over 200 SEK per bottle it is nearing the range of the price of some champagne, so the quality level here also has to take a step up. There are in my view many good cavas in this range but the selection in the Nordics is not too wide. We have, however been able to find some good options.
Gramona III Lustros Gran Reserva 2006 from Gramona: 281 SEK at Systembolaget. Gramona is one of the bigger mid-sized producers with around 150ha of vineyards. This 2006 vintage is a blend of 75% xarel.lo och 25% Macabeo. It has a really nice nose with nougat, brioche, minerals and pear. On the palate it is a pleasant mix of yellow plums, citrus with a hint of mineral and lovely brioche. Not cheap but competes nicely with the best champagnes in the same price range.
Gramona Reserva Brut Rosado from Gramona: 335 SEK at Winefinder. Another cava from Gramona but this time a rosé. This is a 100% Pinot Noir so not the traditional grapes from the region but still good. There are not that many good rosé cavas available so I have included this one in my list. It is over-priced but still good. To be decent value for money it should perhaps be priced around 200 SEK, but since it is so rare with good rosé bubbly in the Nordics I still included it on my list. It has lovely scent of red berries and blueberries as well as hints of anis and citrus. The taste has nice red berries with a pleasant dry finish.
Relats de Recaredo Gran Reserva Brut Nature 2010 from Recaredo: €25.90 at Alko. Recaredo is delivering one of the really good cava options available in Finland. I do not have any detailed tasting notes from this one but recall tasting it a while back and really enjoying it. Blend of Xarel.lo and Parellada, aged for at least 32 months.
Guillem Carol Gran Reserva Barrica Brut Nature from Cellers Carol Valles: 250 SEK at thewinecurious. This is a an interesting cava from a small family producer Cellers Carol Valles. It has spent time on oak (which the Barrica in the name indicates). It is made from Xarel.lo (50%) and Chardonnay (50%). The 4 months on oak gives the cava a bit more rustic flavor and I am myself very fond of this but it is not everyone’s cup of tea. This is a cava that has fine and elegant bubbles. It shows clear signs of aging and the nose has brioche-like and buttery notes from the Chardonnay. There is also pleasant aromas of ripe candied fruit mixing with the floral notes from the Xarel.lo. In the mouth it is full with a long taste. The brioche and candied fruit once again comes through in the taste.
Rimarts Brut Nature Gran Reserva Especial Chardonnay from Rimarts: 242 SEK from thewinecurios. This is from one of our favorite producers, Rimarts, a 100% chardonnay cava. The cava has been aged from 38 to 44 months and the aging really pays off. It is intense and bright gold in color. The bubbles are very fine and persistent . Sharp and intense nose with a variety of aromas where there is a clear freshness of citrus and green apples but also the brioche like aromas. Very balanced, with a fruity finishing flavor.
There are not as many recommendations in this third part but it does reflect the fact that there is not as much offered in this higher price range. There are also some of the cavas offered in this higher price range that are just not that good value for money so this round up has tried to find the gems in the category.If I need to pick my favorite it would probably be the Barrica from Guillem Carol. The time spent on oak really gives the cava some extra character.
This concludes the round-up of the best cavas. If you have your own suggestions please do not hesitate to suggest those and if I agree I will add them to the relevant post.