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Cava Recaredo

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Josep Mata Capellades founded Cavas Recaredo in 1924, naming the domaine in honor of his father, Recaredo Mata Figueres. Josep Mata Capellades built the cellars in his house, in the historic centre of Sant Sadurní d’Anoia. Parts of the cellars are now over 80 years old and have been conserved in their original form. Recaredo is a pioneer in the production of totally dry cavas, in working with oak barrels and in longer-aged cavas. Cavas Recaredo is currently managed by Josep and Antoni Mata Casanovas, the sons of its founder, with Ton Mata actively involved and representing the succeeding generation.

Recaredo owns forty-six hectares of vineyards in the Alt Penedes district planted primarily to the Xarello, Macabeu and Parellada grape varieties, with smaller amounts of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Monastrell (Mourvedre). Viticulture at Recaredo is based solely on dry farming; no herbicides or pesticides are used and only organic fertilizers are applied when necessary; grapes are harvested manually; and, production is limited to cavas that are completely dry. The estate strictly follows an organic viticulture regime.

Vinification is carried out entirely at the Recaredo cellars in Sant Sadurní d’Anoia. The musts from the oldest Xarello vines ferment in oak barrels, which give structure and greater complexity for longer-aged cavas. Some of the base wine is aged in oak barrels for some months. This wine will be used to add greater finesse and structure to the final blending. At Recaredo, the wines are aged in-bottle in continuous contact with the second fermentation lees; the bottles are closed with 100% natural cork stoppers. Disgorging is carried out on an exclusively manual basis, at the cellars’ natural temperature, without freezing the necks of the bottles, a process that produces the most natural product possible. The cavas of Recaredo are disgorged totally dry with a zero dosage and all cuvées are vintage-dated.

Effectively, Can Recaredo, as the domaine is known, is a deeply traditional producer of the finest Cavas available in the market. To visit the cellars and observe the process is to return to another time when artisanal, hand-crafted products of the highest quality were the universally accepted standard, the goal that all sought to achieve. Here, in brief form is the Recaredo commitment:

• Production of single-vintage cavas only.
• Production of completely dry cavas: “Brut Nature”.
• Vinification, production and ageing 100% in-house.
• Ageing in bottle inside our caves, with real cork stoppers.
• Remuage by hand, in traditional racks.
• Manual disgorgement without freezing the bottle’s neck.

2010 “Terrers” Brut Nature Gran Reserva: Recaredo’s flagship Cava, “Terrers” is a blend of 54% Xarel-lo, 42% Macabeu, and 4% Parellada. Five solid years on the lees imbues the wine with sumptuous depth, yet there is none of the excessive yeastiness or clumsy creaminess that sometimes blur terroir expression in such long-aged sparkling wines. Instead, a subdued but persistent mousse serves as a texturally enchanting delivery system for pure limestone essence, framed by crunchy yellow fruits and a lacing of dried honey. Although, like all of Recaredo’s Cavas, “Terrers” receives no dosage, it does not scream shrilly of its dryness—it hangs together beautifully, comfortable in its harmony of acid, mineral, and fruit. The taster is left with, above all, a striking sense of elegance that is exceedingly hard to come by in the sparkling wines of this region—and it is this elusive elegance in particular that makes Recaredo the greatest Cava producer there is.
2007 “Brut de Brut” Brut Nature Gran Reserva: For the first time, with the 2007 vintage, Recaredo produced their always fiercely mineral-driven “Brut de Brut” from a single zone: the Serral del Vall, in the Bitlles Valley Highlands. Topsoils here are poor, and this wine expresses the characteristic limestone of the Alt-Penedes even more forcefully than the “Terrers” above. Created from equal parts Xarel-lo and Macabeu, the 2007 spent eight years on the lees before disgorgement, and the resulting Cava bears the mark of its extended aging in its broad, layered, incredibly deep texture. While not heavier than “Terrers,” it is decidedly more mineral-dominated and complex. Furthermore, the relatively cool 2007 growing season resulted in a wine of excellent acidity—a perfect foil for its autolytic complexity.
2005 “Reserva Particular” Brut Nature Gran Reserva: Recaredo’s astonishing “Reserva Particular” is made from old vines of Xarel-lo (55%) and Macabeu (45%) planted in the early 1950s. The Xarel-lo undergoes initial fermentation and aging in previously used oak barrels, thereby lending the wine an additional layer of textural intrigue, and the wine spends over ten years resting on its lees under—as always—natural cork. One would be forgiven for expecting the end result to be overwhelmingly yeasty, but this Cava is stunning in its clarity and verve—almost more youthful than the “Brut de Brut” above. Its subtle notes of brioche are offset by bright, clean aromas of red and yellow fruits and a firm spine of salty minerality. A gentle mousse allows its complex vinous qualities to be foregrounded. (Each bottle of “Reserva Particular” is individually packaged in a handsome sliding-top wooden box.)
2005 “Turo d’En Mota”: The legendary “Turo d’En Mota” hails from a single parcel of Xarel-lo planted in 1940 in the greatest vineyard Recaredo owns, in the highest-altitude sector of the Alt-Penedes. Like the “Reserva Particular” above, it presents in a shockingly youthful manner given the full decade it spent on the lees, and older bottles have wowed us with their slow and regal evolution. With “Turo d’En Mota,” one understands in a profound way the estate’s insistence that Xarel-lo is the most pure and true deliverer of terroir in the Penedes. Its layers of complexity and its eerily perfect sense of balance put it in an elite peer group that includes only the very finest of Champagnes, and it is without a doubt the greatest wine produced in the region—and one of the greatest in all of Spain. (As with the “Reserva Particular,” each bottle is individually packaged in wood.)
2012 “Intens Rosat” Brut Nature Gran Reserva: Made from 71% Monastrell, 23% Pinot Noir, and 6% Garnatxa, Recaredo’s “Intens Rosat” has no pretenses of being an airy, innocuous quaffing rose. On the contrary, in its brilliant ruby color, in its volume and breadth in the mouth, and in its delicious succulence, it revels in its power and depth. Despite its generosity, however, a telltale and very Recaredo sense of grace and restraint keeps it in balance. It deftly conquers the challenge facing all warm-climate wines: how to evoke the spirit of terroir without succumbing to excess ripeness—or, conversely, how to maintain acidity and freshness without denying the wine’s sun-blessed birthplace. As far as cuisine, one would be hard pressed to find a dish that could out-muscle this robust Cava, yet its innate elegance keeps it from trampling more delicate preparations.

Summer/Autumn Sparkling Wine Program

An ideal time to become familiar with our exceptional growers We at Rosenthal Wine Merchant have championed great and distinctive sparkling wines for the entirety of our near-forty-year existence. Since 1981, we have imported the elegant, classical Champagnes of Guy Larmandier in Vertus—long before there was even a “grower Champagne” movement to speak of. We […]