2014 Alta Alella ‘Bruant’ Organic Cava Brut Nature, Catalonia
Tasting a Natural organic wine with No Added Sulphites is always a standout experience, whether good or bad!!
But Tasting an organic sparkling wine with no SO2, Spanish Cava in this instance, felt even more unique, as I have to admit it was my first time.
Another very interesting feature on this wine is the traditional closure system. A rather thick piece of metal holds the cork to the bottle’s neck finish in an unusual manner.
What’s also great is that the label displays the disgorgement date, that is to say the day the lees where removed out of the bottle for final corking.
Being a Brut Nature, this wine didn’t see the addition of any dosage liqueur either. Pretty much the raw base wine re-fermented in its own bottle.
I was lucky enough to spend a day visiting Alta Alella winery on the height North of Barcelona city, hanging around the vineyards. The winery is located in an area that has its own appellation: The D.O. Alella Wine Region.
You can find complete information about the producing winery following the link at the bottom of this post.
Some Winemaking Info:
Made with a single local grape variety: 100% Pansa Blanca (Xarel·lo)
The base wine is made from perfectly healthy organic grapes. With no Sulphur added, the grapes have to have no disease or imperfection whatsoever. The base wine is then bottled after the end of the first fermentation and the second fermentation takes place in the bottle using the traditional method.
The wine is aged on its lees in the bottle between 9 and 21months and is released on the market without dosage.
No sulfites or other products are added throughout the process.
The nose displays subtle but deep notes of hay, green apple, iodine, apricot, almond and brioche. I know it’s quite a lot of aromas. It might sound fancy but the nose is complex and charming, while still being fresh and mineral. Good sign!
The mouthfeel surprise by its smoothness, which is not always the first impression you get from a cava. This one has superfine bubbles that caress your palate with a silky texture. Plenty of rather intense flavors of buttery shortcake, dried apricot, an enjoyable hay tone, citrus peel, and sweet grapes almost like delicate raisin. Great acidity that is perfectly balanced by a perceived sweetness, oily texture, and this delicious effervescence.
A truly excellent cava, with light and refreshing tones that keep it approachable and pleasing, but also loads of characters from the lees contact: intense brioche and almond highlighting the care that was taken to make it and age in bottle.
Very long and complex like an expensive sparkling.
The slightly salty iodine minerality that accompanies the whole tasting, from smell to finish is a delight and gives the wine its backbone of personality. It really turns the simple tasting into an experience that feels rather unique, such a character not being common at this level of expression in sparkling wine.
Awards and References:
Robert Parker 2015 – 90/100
Guía de Vinos Wine Up 2015 (panel ecatas.com) – 91,23/100
If you’ve never seen a glass of Organic Cava sparkling wine being poured, you must watch this Video: