New Cava classifications  

ICEX presents new guidelines for Spain's most famous sparkling wine.

The DO Cava has presented the new subzones / Credit: ICEX
The DO Cava has presented the new subzones / Credit: ICEX

The Spanish Institute of Foreign Trade ICEX has presented the classifications and new zones for the DO Cava that have been planned since last year. The aim of the new classification is to enhance the region and its sparkling wines and to provide consumers with a guarantee of quality with new indications of origin and product. "It will be a key year for DO Cava, with the introduction of an ambitious segmentation and zoning project," ICEX said. 

This envisages regulating the Cava de Guarda and Cava de Guarda Superior levels, which have been in force since last year, according to stricter requirements. From now on, Cava de Guarda Superior is to comply with the following regulations: The grapes must be 100 percent organically grown and from vineyards older than ten years. A maximum of 10,000 kg of grapes per hectare may be harvested. The Reserva category requires 18 months of bottle fermentation, Gran Reserva 30 months and De Paraje Calificado 36 months. A new "Integral Producer" label identifies those wineries that carry out the entire winemaking process themselves, from grape growing to bottling. 

In addition to the previous labels, the label for Cava de Guarda and Cava de Guarda Superior must in the future show the region of origin and sub-zones, the "Integral Producer" seal and, depending on the length of bottle fermentation, the classification as Cava de Guarda (at least nine months in bottle fermentation) or Cava de Guarda Superior.

 The origins of Cava lie in the wine-growing region of Penedés. However, Cava can also be produced in other towns and regions, which are themselves divided into sub-zones. There are four main areas of the DO, which include the Valle del Ebro with the sub-zones Alto Ebro and Valle del Cierzo; and the Comtats de Barcelona with the sub-zones Serra de Mar, Valls d'Anoia-Foix, Conca del Gaià, Serra de Prades, and Pla de Ponent. Further regions are Viñedos de Almendralejo and Valencia. 
The new regulations, which have already been approved by the Plenary of the Regulatory Council in 2020, are still subject to final approval by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. itp

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