Quaffing cava with Canals & Munné

You recently got a taster of our trip to Catalonia, but you know that there is more to say about the wines we drank and the beer we sampled. Today I’ll give you a little insight into the cava we tried at Canals & Munné in Sant Sadurni D’Anoia, the capital of cava.

cava, wine tasting, Sant Sadurni

This spacious and airy tasting room is remarkable for its friendly welcome and, perhaps more importantly, a large kids slide – which I managed to resist going down, even after several tastes of their cava. They are one of the larger producers and so have an extensive menu to test down at their tasting room, which also serves as a restaurant. They are not the cheapest, given their size, but equally if you head over to Sant Sadurni you will find the prices much easier on the pocket than here in the UK.

Brut Nature
12%, aged 48 months minimum

The tiny bubbles of this barely coloured cava belie the rich hit that they give on the palette. It is fruity on the nose, but dry and yeasty in the mouth with a light taste that disappears on the finish.

Excellent match with the crackers we were served, demonstrated its grain notes and dryness but I think that it would also work well with the delicate flavours of seafood dishes or light summer salads.

A 6 out of 10 for me, not my favourite, but not a bad drop for the price. The poppy edge of the bubbles gets less oppressive as you drink, which gives a drying but refreshing sensation on the finish. They claim florals on the descriptor but I found that to be barely detectable.

20 month aged

A 2012 gold medal winner, and deservedly so in my book. This has a beautiful colour, an orange glazed rose appearance with bubbles that have much more perseverance than the Gran Reserva.

It has a lot of fruit flavours without any of the sweetness and with its total absence of the heart-burning acid that you may associate with sparkling rose this is mellow and easy drinking. 

Overwhelmingly for me it was the strawberry that came through and it had a pleasing impact on the tongue from the bubbles which come away cleanly for a refreshing finish.

The Boy’s helpful comment was that this would match well with beef jerky. I’ll leave it to you to give that a go. I thought is would work well with heavily salted foods and cold meats like Iberico ham, so I’ll let you consider whether I agree with him or not.

I scored this a very good 8 out of 10 overall, drinkable on its own or as a wine to go with food, perhaps being appropriate throughout the meal if you planned your menu appropriately as it is robust enough to take strong flavours.

Reserva, Organic

Another barely there colour with a punchy smell with acetone notes but also the carbonation itself coming through, which then led to a surprisingly soft impact on the palette. It is a sweet caress, with none of the acid promised by the nose. There is a very slight biscuity flavour, along with dashes of honey and fig – with tiny delicate bubbles which were way more delicate than the others we tried that day. 

Softer and smoother bubbles than the gran reserva – barely there but caressing on the mouth and disappears on the finish. Again another fine pairing for Iberico ham, I went a 7 out of 10 but still nicely played for a relatively young organic, it has a lot of potential.


Bestselling author and freelance drinks writer. Champion of pubs and breweries. Occasional printmaker.

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