At-Home Tour of the Wineries of Spain & Portugal: Cava and the Whites

In my tasting class at the university we tested 12 bottles of wine from Spain and Portugal. I have added in a few more bottles from the Iberian Peninsula that have caught my attention.

As this post started running too long I have divided it in three. First off, this post about white, green and sparkling wines, followed by the reds and then lastly, sherries and ports.

12 (empty) bottles of wine from Spain and Portugal

12 (empty) bottles of wine from Spain and Portugal

  • we started with Cava, a sparkling wine, and fabulous value, especially when compared to French champagnes. In our class we tasted  Segura Viudas, Brut Reserva. My tasting sheet describes it as acid, dry, with green apple and ‘toast’ notes.
    Cava is the Spanish version of Champagne, and very inexpensive compared to the French Champagnes

    Cava is the Spanish answer champagne, and very inexpensive compared to the French champagnes

    From a different selection of Cavas at the ‘Signature’ Liquor Store, my favourite was Codorníu – Clásico Brut. It is light and crisp, and the cheapest of the Sparkling wines at $13.99! It was paired with Manchego cheese, a hard sheep cheese from Spain, and the combination was magic. (More on this liquor store tasting, appropriately timed for New Year’s Eve)

    Cava Codorníu - Clásico Brut, light and crisp!

    Cava Codorníu – Clásico Brut, light and crisp!

  • the second wine we tasted in our class was Gatao, Vinho Verde (green wine), a slightly effervescent and refreshing wine from Portugal, with the flavours of ‘citrus and green apple’.

    Gatao Vihno Verde from Portugal

    Gatao Vihno Verde from Portugal

  • we also tried Burgans Albariño, the Spanish version of vino verde, with fresh citrus notes that would go well with creamy seafood dishes or raw oysters. We had a glass (or two) in Galicia, served appropriately with pulpo (octopus).
    (If you fancy testing your Spanish, this is from my Soleado course: No hay muchos vinos blancos en España, pero la región de Galicia produce un tipo de vino ‘verde’ llamado ‘albariño’. Este vino tiene una acidez alta y es un buen complemento para los mariscos crudos como las ostras.  Nota: La mayoría de las uvas verdes se usan para el jerez.  Más en los vinos de España)

    Albariño Vino Verde from Spain

    Albariño Vino Verde from Spain

  • We didn’t taste any whites (vinos blancos) in our class, but I found this wonderful white in the Liquor Store: Viña Esmeralda (emerald vines). It is a Spanish blend of whites with a lot of Gewurztraminer in it, and is a perfect summer sipping wine, pairing nicely with almonds.  It comes from Catalonia in the northeast of Spain.
    white wine from Spain

    Viña Esmeralda (emerald vines), a Spanish white wine blend

    Next blog I will go through the red wines (vinos tintos) of these two countries, as most of the grapes grown in Spain and Portugal are made into red wines.

2 responses to “At-Home Tour of the Wineries of Spain & Portugal: Cava and the Whites

  1. Pingback: At-Home Tour of the wineries of Spain & Portugal: the Reds | Albatz Gallery & Blog·

  2. Pingback: Stay-at-Home Tour of the wineries of Spain & Portugal: Sherry and Port | Albatz Gallery & Blog·

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