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Produced in the actual bottle in the same painstaking way as French Champagne, the Avinyó Brut is Cava at its finest. A lovely pearl of a bubble beads to the top of the glass: soft scents of apple, pear, and fresh bread delight the nose. In the mouth, creamy fruit and the faintest hint of cinnamon caress the palate. Fun, flavorful and easy to drink, the Avinyó Brut is one of the tasting panels favorite sparkling wines. Kudos to the Esteve Nadal family for producing such charming, well balanced "Champagne", or Cava rather, with such a beguiling aftertaste that it lingers for nearly a minute. Exhibiting neither an acidic bite nor a flat, flabby finish, this wine will either change your mind about sparking wines or make you wonder why some people spend exorbitant sums on Dom Perignon. We suggest serving the Avinyó chilled (about 40º F).
It is nice to know some things don't change. Hors d'oeuvres, smoked salmon with capers and onions, and even that special someone remain some of our favorite accompaniments to the Avinyó Brut. Like all fine sparkling wines, less is usually more. Neither "heady" nor heavy accentuates the subtle delicacy of sparkling wine, especially Cava. Although our preference is to consume the Avinyó Brut as an aperitif with family and friends, we do like what it does for lightly grilled or sautéed fish, and the fact that it will stand up to an herb-roasted chicken, with asparagus, attests to its subtle complexity. You may also want to try it with veal or turkey. And for those few among us who still insist upon saving the bubbly for after dinner, we suggest serving the Avinyó Brut with fruit or cheese. Enjoy!
Avinyó Cava is a pearl of a wine, a rare bubbly that exhibits both delicacy and finesse, as well as the artisan purity for which Catalonia is renowned. The Esteve Nadal family of Avinyonet del Penedés produces Avinyó at the family owned winery. The winery is located at CAN FONTANALS, the family's home, in the heart of the Penedés region of Catalonia, near Barcelona. The Nadal family's delicious sparkling wine, known locally as Cava, is produced in the same painstaking way as Champagne. Until quite recently, it was the only wine the family made for sale, preferring to concentrate its talents on making just one wine - the finest Cava in Spain. The patriarch, Juan Esteve, planted vines of Parellada, Xarel-lo and Macabeo 30 years ago so that he could have a fine sparkling wine for his family and friends as well as the cadre of distinguished guests who arrived to visit his wife - a celebrated ceramic artist. Today Juan Esteve's two sons and a daughter carry on the tradition of Avinyó, providing a very small quantity of exquisite bubbly for export. Avinyó is produced from primarily free run juice. In addition, the resulting wine is aged in the cellar for a minimum of 18 months. The use of a high percentage of free run juice (up to 80%) gives the wine its creamy, fresh, non-astringent character, while the extended bottle aging practiced at this winery contributes to a very long, flavorful finish. It is Avinyó's creamy center and distinctive finish that remains the signature of this estate's outstanding Cava. On the Avinyó label, there is an inscription in Catalan that aptly represents the philosophy of the Esteve Nadal family. The inscription roughly translates into the following: From the must of the flower or free run juice and with the rigor of a work well crafted. This symbolizes the family's artisan values and the commitment to the ultimate quality of its wine. There also appears on the label a tiara from the church of the local village. Indeed, the Esteve Nadal family has crafted a jewel that many in the wine trade have rightly called other worldly. The masio or farmhouse that originally housed the winery is also the workshop of Fina Via, the wife of Juan Esteve, who is a renowned Catalonian artist. Her ceramic works appear throughout the region and all of them are done according to the same traditional methods that were used in Catalonia during the seventeenth century. How much more beautiful the world would be with a little more art, a little more love and a few more wines like the Avinyó Cava, one well known wine critic has stated. And indeed, we all owe a debt of thanks to Senor and Senora Esteve Nadal for doing their part to preserve the traditions of Catalonia, in both art and wine. In the words of one distinguished member of our tasting panel: It is obvious that this family's pearls are not hidden, they shine forth in my glass. Certainly, this tiny estate is doing its part to make the world smile.
Cava: Catalonian Bubbly Cava may not sound like Champagne, but it tastes a lot like it. Produced by the traditional champagne method of fermenting the wine in the bottle, Cava is Spain's answer and some would even say rebuke to Champagne. More fine champagne method sparkling wine flows out of Catalonia than anywhere else on earth, including Champagne. The limestone hills beyond Barcelona provide the ideal soil condition, nearly identical to that of Champagne, for the cultivation of the native Xarelo-lo, Parellada, Viura, and Macabeo grapes for sparkling wine. With the addition of champagne yeasts during the fermentation, the high-acid musts of Catalonia yield sparkling wines of rich flavor, softness and finesse to rival those of Champagne itself. Where Cava may even have the edge is in its soft, round, lingering finish - the antithesis of French Champagne which can often possess just a bit too much nerve and acidity in its aftertaste or finish. Although Cava can be made in many areas of Spain, it is the Catalan versions from Penedés that have formed the bulwark of quality and captured the world's attention. Centered near the town of San Sadurni de Noya, 20 miles west of Barcelona, the production of Cava has taken the world by storm. In the past thirty years, the export of Cava has grown from a relative trickle to Spain's leading wine export; Cava is presently the world's number one selling champagne method sparkling wine.
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