Anna de Codorniu, Brut, DO Cava, Penedes, Catalonia, Spain, NV
On Cava regulations
Traditional method of production, with a minimum of 9 months lees ageing (15 for a Reserva, and 30 months for a Gran Reserva); minimum pressure of 4 atm; alcohol limits are 10.8-12.8% abv. The brut style is < 15g/l residual sugar.
This wine: lot No. L8142A16, a chardonnay dominated blend along with the 3 traditional varieties of macabeo, parellada and xarel-lo, agglomerate mushroom cork closure, 11.5% abv, widely available, ~£10 (09/18)
Consumer tasting note: lemon hued, with aromas dominated by baked apple, supported by notes of yellow citrus and leaf tea; medium bodied with fresh acidity, with slightly richer flavours moving towards stone and tropical fruits, along with edges of warm hay and roasted nuts. Drink now –
RTD, but will keep – Wait. Finishes medium-long. I found on the second day, that exposure to oxygen of the remaining half-bottle increased the complexity significantly, so it may be worthwhile double decanting.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity lemon, showing small bubbles and tears.
Nose: clean, medium (+) intensity, fully developed, with aromas as they come, of stewed apple with a baked/caramelised edge, lemon pith, beeswax, hint of leaf tea.
Palate: off-dry, medium (+) acidity, medium alcohol, medium body, medium (+) intensity, a light grip, with flavours of leaf tea, stewed apple, white peach, an edge of something tropical, papaya perhaps, warm hay, a hint of roasted nuttiness. A creamy mousse with medium persistence, on a medium (+) length of stewed apple edged with hints of well-baked pastry and anise (after some time), and a low-key grip.
Quality: good, nicely balanced fresh acidity with alcohol; showing a decent intensity throughout, slightly lesser concentration, with moderate complexity from ageing on the lees; finishes medium-long. Just not quite very good.
Drinking readiness/ageing potential: drink now, unsuited to further ageing, but will keep for 1-3 years – a sound structure and balance, but without the qualities to suggest further positive development with time.