On agenda for the sixth and last day was Cava. We were also going to have dinner in a Michelin star restaurant in Barcelona. I will give quite short descriptions from the producers, but I have tried to attach several photos.
Our first stop was in village Sant Sadurni d’Anoia where we were going to Juvé y Camps. We arrived to the village and as soon as our guide from the winery joined we drove out from the village. At the outskirts of the village they had their production facilities. There we could see very big production facilities and during our short stop in the front yard at least four tractors arrived with grapes from the vineyards located nearby.
They were doing continuous online analysis to measure sugar content, acidity etc. This was a very fast process and also interesting as I had not seen this kind of system “live” earlier. We made a short tour looking at their vinery and there were a lot of tanks, but also a lot of empty space. This was, however, very interesting to get the opportunity to have a look so close as we could walk wherever we wanted. After the tour we had a tasting and we could taste several good Cavas, but also some still wines. Their tasting facilities had very high class. I think this was very modern and it is clear that they are used to receive a lot of people. They mentioned that the whole vinery was built in 1990s, but it actually looked to be quite new.
After we had ended the tour we went back to the village and there we had a look at their cellar and finally we could taste some more Cavas and this time together with food. This was arranged in a very nice way and I enjoyed it a lot.
Our second stop for the day was Freixenet. This was completely different than everything else what we had seen so far.
There it was not even possible to go in without a wristband similar to what you get at amusement parks. The “show” started with a movie giving some basic information about them. After that we went downstairs to the old cellar where they had thousands of bottles, but later the guide told us that they were mainly worthless and they were only giving the picture how it had looked in the old days. After the old cellar we moved to the new cellar. There a train waited for us and it drove through only showing the place where they were ageing the bottles. Everything else was kept secretly and the reason why they were not showing anything else was security. This was a quite bad explanation and I would at least personally have liked to see their production facilities. They are producing about 100 Million bottles a year and I am quite sure it would have been something special. Freixenet is of course a big producer, but same applies to Torres and there we were allowed to see much more and the attitude was completely different. Here the style was more arrogant and they were not willing to relieve any of the secrets. This did not make a very good impression on me at least.
After the “tour” we came to their tasting facilities. The room was full of other people and it was very difficult to concentrate. The noise level was also very high and this was our last tasting during the trip, but I would also like to say that this was the one that was arranged in the most “commercial” way. They were not really interested in what we thought about the tasting. Otherwise they would have focused more on the quality of the arrangements and the contrast was huge compared to Juvé y Camps. For me Freixenet was a disappointment although the Cavas we tasted were quite okay.
After Freixenet we went back to the hotel and everybody was waiting for our last dinner. As we had some wines left we were even having a tasting in the hotel. At 7.30 we finally left for Barcelona where we were going to have dinner at the Michelin star restaurant Roca Moo.
We arrived at the restaurant and the personnel waited for us and showed us to the table. It was from the beginning easy to see that they were real professionals. Our menu for the evening was Joan Roca and this was going to be something special. The restaurant looked very modern and close to where we sat we could follow two chefs working. Unfortunately I had my back against them which means that it was not so easy to follow, but it was anyhow clear that they knew what they were doing. The dinner started and we got some appetizers that tasted very good.
- White asparagus and true cold terrine
- Our creamy zucchini omelette with grilled baby squid
- Oxtail and Palamós prawn ravioli
- Mediterranean sole with green olive, orange, bergamote,
- Pine nuts and fennel emulsion
- Lamb shoulder with black garlic and manchego cheese
- Pigeon with red fruits
- Lemon textures
- Banana, rum and spices
In combination with these courses we had the following wines:
- J. Prüm Sonnenuhr Kabinett 2008. Mosel. Riesling
- Alphonse Mellot Réserve 2012. A.O.C. Pouilly-Fumé. Sauvignon blanc
- 7 Fuentes 2012. D.O. Valle de la Orotava. Listán negro, Tintilla
- Roca 2013. D.O. Penedés. Xarel·lo
- Alto Moncayo 2011. O. Campo de Borja. Grenache
- Mas Martinet. Els Escurçons 2010. D.O.C. Priorat. Grenache
- Reichsgraf von Kesselestatt. Scharzoho’ erger Spätlese 2007. Mosel. Riesling*
- Colheita 1995. Porto. Touriga nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta roriz, Tinta cao, Tinta barroca, others
Before each course the waitress was explaining in detail what we were going to eat and the sommelier did the same for the wines. I asked some questions about the wines we were drinking and it was very nice to see how well they knew all the answers. The sommelier was really professional and the same applies to the rest of the personnel as well.
The food was very good and I must admit it was even better than I had expected. The combination of wine of food was excellent and to start with a Riesling of this kind was also something special. The wines itself were also very good and my personal view is that the red Alto Moncayo 2011 was the best wine we had during the evening. This was a very good wine and it is made of 100% Garnacha. The wine is fermented in open-top wood fermenters, and spends 19 months in 100% new oak prior to being bottled unfiltered. This is full-bodied, powerful , concentrated and made from very old vines and tiny yields. This wine has got 95 points from Robert Parker. The price of this wine is only about 30 euros, but the vintage start to be sold out. Fortunately I have been lucky to order some bottles of this perfect wine and I see forward to taste this wine at home as well. It will be interesting to see how it will taste at home.
We ended up with espresso and some Grappa, I took a local variant similar to Grappa and this tasted also very good. I asked the sommelier for something good to end the dinner with and she suggested this and it was a perfect end of a nice evening.
Finally we went up to the roof terrace where we thanked Felix for the very good trip he had arranged for us and then it was time to head back to Sitges for the last night of the trip. We stayed one more night in Barcelona, but as this was the official end of a perfect trip I want to thank Felix and our whole group for the week we had spent together. We have had the opportunity to see a lot of different vineries and this have also given me a lot of more experience about the good wines that can be found in Spain.