Cava VallDolina Reserva Brut Nature 2009 (disgorged: October 2012)
Cinco de Mayo, the fifth of May, the day when Mexicans in and around the city of Puebla celebrate a victorious 1862 battle against the French Army and the United States simply celebrates Mexican culture. Every year at this time, displays of Mexican made alcoholic drinks show up near the checkout at virtually every supermarket and convenience store around the country.
You won’t find any mass-produced Mexican beer and Tequila at Elie’s, because we’re a wine shop.
But we will suggest an inexpensive sparkling wine from Spain to pair with the festivities. Whether you’re eating spicy camerones a la Diabla from La Terraza or chicken tacos from Mi Pueblo, Cava VallDolina is a crisp and versatile wine that will elevate any celebration.
The visionary winemakers Raimon Badell and Ferran Gil of Masia Can Tutusaus combine superior geography with their artistry and skill to produce Cava VallDolina. Of all the areas in Penedès producing the classic Cava grapes, only the mountainous terrain in Massís del Garraf, the home of Masia Can Tutusaus, offers the cooling significance of altitude that nurtures a higher acidity in the grapes.
These guys believe in making contemporary wines that respect Mediterranean culture without becoming slaves to the past. They respect Mother Nature and, above all, they respect their vines and their soil. The grapes are handpicked, the wine is bottled at the estate and aged in contact with lees for a period of 24 months, and the disgorgement date is clearly indicated on the label, ensuring that you are drinking the freshest wine possible.
The end result of all this attention to detail is a scandalously drinkable wine with aromas of apple blossom, wheat crackers, and sunshine and a complex finish that sometimes doesn’t exist in sparklers twice the price.
If you’re having a few people over for brunch, try mixing it with equal parts fresh-squeezed orange juice for Mimosas to match this simple recipe for chilaquiles.
In the spirit of the holiday we’ve focused on Mexican Cuisine. The truth is Cava VallDolina will drink nicely alongside countless foods — from pizza to sushi to fried eggs and beyond. Just a few days ago we used a bit of it to cook a simple mushroom risotto, and then drank the rest of the bottle while we ate. Perfection! Fine dining isn’t always about pricey menus and white linen.