ana cordoniuSparkling of course!  And this spring, Anna de Cordoníu has dressed its flagship Cava Brut, NV and Brut Rosé, NV with dainty colors to match the season.

They looked like Easter babies in white and pink robes in the hues of garden roses, like those brought in for the Anna Blooms tasting at The Biltmore by flower designer Kathryn Parrish,  to invoke the legend of Anna, the last heiress of the Cordoníu family, winemakers since 1551.

This young woman married a winemaker from Catalunya, Miquel Raventós,  in 1659, and started her own dynasty  of winemakers.  Inspired by the success of their French neighbor’s  Champagne, her descendants  were the first to master the “Méthode Traditionelle” and to make Cava – Spain’s  sparkling wine.

Today, Cordoníu owns seven estates, five of which in different regions in Spain, one in California and one in Mendoza, Argentina.

But it is from the estate-grown grapes from vineyards near Barcelona that Cava Brut, NV and Brut Rosé, NV are crafted.  Those crowd pleasers are definitely meant to drink young, and are easy-to-drink while being more complex than your everyday sparkling.

Anna de Codorníu Brut, NV  (70% chardonnay, 30% parellada), Spain ($10 to $15) Straw colored and brilliant Anna Brut  has become Codorníu’s most emblematic cava.  The chardonnay, sourced from the O.O. Cava region of Lleida, imparts elegance, body and structure as well as the delicacy of tropical fruit which parellada, sourced in the Penedés estates,  balances with floral aromas and citrusy hints of grapefruit and lime. The result is a vibrant, crisp, easy-to-drink bubbly  with  lively beads, a delicate acidity profile and a short finish.   Brut must be served cold, at about 50F and consumed right away.

Pairings: Great on its own as an apéritif, it complements crudités, shellfish, fish, Asian-style foods like sushi and sashimi or spicier ceviche, tiraditos and anticuchos.

ana rose


Anna de Codorníu Brut Rosé, NV  (70% pinot noir, 30% chardonnay), Spain  ($10 to $15) This rosé  stands out for its beguiling cherry, strawberry color obtained from the pinot noir skin maceration. Clear and bright with consistent bubbles, it opens with aromas of strawberry, red cherry and some warm bread on the nose. Medium- bodied and slightly more chewy than the Brut, this wine develops on the palate with crisp green apple flavors and berries, velvety tannins and a good acidity, ending in an engaging, structured finish.    Must be served cold, at about 50F and consumed right away.

Pairings: It is ideal as an aperitif and stands up to oil-rich fish like salmon, or rice, or hearty tapas and fried seafood.