Cava producers are doing a fantastic job of creating bottles of gorgeous wines from their famed region using three characteristic wine grape: Macabeo, Xarel-lo and Parellada in many wines.
I thought it very important to highlight Cava because as I noticed in my hamlet of San Francisco I visited three wine retailers looking for Cava – two retailers had one SKU, the other retailer had the same SKU (as the first two retailers) plus one net different Cava SKU.
Finding Cava in a sophisticated wine town in like San Francisco is an emblem of a problem. When off-premise retailers are selling very little there is a two prong effect: 1) the wine consumer thinks perhaps there is little Cava present because is that it may be not comparable to other sparkling wine regions on the planet and 2) a wine retailer may feel it is a tepid market place for Cava and why bother getting more SKUs.
As a former wine marketing manager for a large multi-store chain in 30 US states – I believed that by providing more SKUs and being able to talk cogently about wine can help be the authorship for that off-premise business. I believe that retailing wine is an opportunity to make a presentation of wine and own more of that category for the respective business.
Cava has an opportunity to be much more present in the United States. At one time when I think people were not willing to spend too much on sparkling wine Cava was thought of as an inexpensive wine. But the trap for Cava was being thought of as cheap instead of a very specific wine style and viewpoint. Cava is not Prosecco, Champagne, Franciacorta or any other sparkling wine region. In a way Cava should only compete with Cava. There is a defining characteristic that makes Cava a sparkling wine to seek out and to love.
Being in Spain in March of this year (2018) and like any marketing place; when you are on the ground you see many more producers wines. I saw a ton of Cava and a lot of brut nature style that I didn’t think existed. And I love brut nature and generally cannot get enough of it. Prosecco’s meteoric rise has had consequences for all regions including Prosecco itself–mainly regions being lost in the shuffle. Prosecco’s grape had to change from Prosecco to Glera so non-Prosecco producers were not producing Prosecco. Consequences for other sparking wine regions is that you can find fewer sparkling wines from those respective regions on average.
I think Cava will find it’s way back and with marketing and promotion can show the beauty of this wine and for me–I want more choices in the marketplace–I want more Cava and what I always believe in is to promote all regions and hence I would never speak ill of other sparkling wine regions.
I would like to include a review of Cava but don’t have any this time to be reviewing. I’m always on the lookout.
What are you favourite Cavas?
James the Wine Guy
Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.
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