My top 10: Cava
Spanish sparkling wine on a different level, as selected by Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW
With the introduction of a new top-tier classification for Cava in 2017, there’s been a renewed focus on quality for Spain’s sparkling wines. From boutique wineries carving a niche to established names pushing boundaries, Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW highlights his pick of the premium producers and recommends top wines to try Agustí Torelló Mata
Embodying much of Cava’s history, Agustí Torelló Mata is a nephew of the Torelló family of Cavas Torelló and the Mata family of Recaredo. He has previously managed some of the most traditional Cava wineries, and established the Cava Brotherhood. Also founder of the oenological lab in Penedès, Torelló Mata is something of an essential reference point for Cava. Despite having extensive knowledge of Champagne, he was one of the first Cava makers who chose not to imitate the French, but to produce wines with a distinctive Catalan profile. He’s both a fierce defender of native varieties and a proud apostle of the quality and diversity of Penedès terroirs. But perhaps his most remarkable contribution, back in 1979, was his pioneering effort to produce the first top-class Cava, Kripta, at a time when most other producers were making cheap and cheerful wines. ATM is a flagship for Catalan originality.
Agustí Torelló Mata, Kripta Gran Añada, Gran Reserva 2007 95
£ 53.95 Wadebridge Wine Great aromatic complexity, showing long ageing. Deliciously creamy texture on the palate, alongside a lengthy multilayered, finish. This could be the Cava equivalent to Dom Pérignon, based upon blends and long ageing. Organic.
Drink 2018-2030 Alcohol 11.5%
Agustí Torelló Mata, Gran Reserva Barrica, Gran Reserva 2012 92
N/A UK www. agustitorellomata.com Made from 100% Macabeo grapes from three different organic vineyards, which are partially fermented and aged for six months in oak barrels, then aged in bottle for four years. A characterful wine, with nicely defined fruit expression and a round and firm structure. Great Cava for the table. Drink 2018-2022 Alc 12%
Agust’ Torell— Mata
Pedro Ballasteros Torres MW is the DWWA Regional co- Chair for Spain and is on the governing board of the Spanish Tasters’ Union