Have you ever wondered what is the difference between cava and champagne? Well, to make a long story short, Champagne is a region in France and sparkling wine produced in this area is called champagne. Cava was earlier called champagne, too, but original Champagne area producers wanted to protect their product (for obvious reason) they banned using the name for anything else. In Spain there are several producers of ‘champagne’, but the product is called cava. It is produced exactly the same way, but it is not done in Champagne, it’s not called champagne. And actually the name cava refers to caves as they are aged in old caves underground in barrels.
Codorníu is the second best selling cava in Spain after their rival Freixenet. Codorníu produces a whopping 5 million cases annually and they are located only about 50 km/30 mi from Barcelona near a small town called Vilafranca del Penedés.
The Cordniu is a family wine business that goes back to middle of 16th century. Documented proof says that the family had several machines and implements relating to the wine industry. At that time Codorníu was producing about 100,000 bottles of cava per year, and the size of the new structure seemed overly grandiose. The location of the winery, then some distance from the road and the railway line, was also unusual for the time. Manuel Raventós, however, was insistent that the family winery should be close to the vineyard as he was aware that such proximity would be the key to improving the quality of the wines. Nowadays, Codorníu continues to control the production process of all its cavas from vineyard planting to finished product. The winery has the most modern installations and the very latest equipment
In summer 2013 we were having a summer trip by car near Barcelona, visiting Cavas Codorníu was a must. One of their cavas, Anna de Codorníu, is one of our absolute favorites. We always have a bottle or two in the fridge. Here’s a virtual tour through the cava cellars!