CAVA: THE ALCHEMY OF LIGHT AND DARK
Cavas for all seasons
These Cavas are from a single estate in the Penedès. The Penedès is in north-eastern Spain, close to Barcelona and squeezed geographically between the limestone hills of the coast and higher hills inland which lead to the Spanish plain.
The name ‘Camps d’Estels’ means the Fields of Stars in the Catalan language; to make Cava, we need the sunshine to grow and ripen the grapes, but also a year of darkness, to do the second fermentation and ageing in bottle.
A short introduction video about Camps d'Estels, filmed at the estate
Camps d'Estels, the Place
The Penedès, on the north-eastern coast of Spain and close to the city of Barcelona was once under the sea and the area is full of limestone and fossils. But also one finds soils reminiscent of sandy beaches, dunes and river deltas and the grapes for Camps d’Estels are grown on one of these, a fine sandy soil which gives superb acidity.
Vineyards and wines
Cava is made traditionally from three different grape varieties, Macabeo, Xarel·lo and Parellada. Each of these grapes brings a specific characteristic to the base wines. Macabeo gives a clear acidic skeleton structure, Xarel·lo provides the flesh and body, while Parellada adds attractiveness and personality of fruit.
A blend of these characteristics is bottled and then ferments again, before ageing for a minimum of 9 months in bottle. Ater a time, the yeasts in the bottle will begin to decompose, conferring a range of other flavours to the wine. The longer the wine is left on the “lees”, the more these type of flavours will dominate.
The vineyard is in a single estate with the three traditional grape varieties. 47 hectares in the lower Penedès on a sandy, ancient river delta soil. Good base wines require modern wine-making techniques in small tanks, followed by ageing in a curious repurposed railway tunnel.