Imagine having 30km’s of cellars 20 or 30 meters below ground? You have to admit it is the perfect way to look after your wine; cool, dark, humid and still surroundings. Not to mention it is a great way to utilize space. Unfortunately I am not speaking about my own cellar here but this is exactly what Spanish Cava producers have been doing for over 150 years.
Since I was in Barcelona for 3 days I made sure a visit to the Cava caves was on my list. From the main train station in Barcelona the journey is about 50 minutes (that is if you train doesn’t break down like ours!) and costs around 3.5 Euro. Naturally the easiest visits to organize at short notice were to the two biggest producers in Sant Sadurní d´Anoia – Freixenet and their rival Codorniu. Make sure to call or e-mail to make a reservation otherwise your likely to miss out.
Freixenet is located directly beside the train station, which makes life super easy. The facility is HUGE above and below ground. Truly impressive. The tour is just over 6 Euro and is 1.5hours long which is pretty decent and you get a glass of their standard Brut Cordon Negro at the end. The tour involves a short video and then a tour underground where you are explained about the history and processes of making Cava.
To get to Codorniu from Freixenet is about 2km and an easy 30minute walk, otherwise you can catch a taxi from the train station. The tour is again 6 Euro and lasts 1.5 hours with 2 glasses of Cava to finish off (Gran Plus Ultra & Brut Rose made from Pinot Noir). The grounds at Codorniu are absolutely stunning and rumour has it on the 30th of July there was a fire at 2am – so watch out for a special Cava fire edition!
I would definitely recommend a visit to the caves; they are impressive for wine-lovers and anyone who likes a bit of underground mystery. However be sure to check out some of the smaller producers too – watch out for following posts on the best places to visit and what to expect.