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Vallformosa Extra Seco

Cracka Rating

Cracka Review

Extra Seco means 'extra dry', but it sounds so much sexier with a Spanish accent. It does, however, seem a little out of context when you see it has 15g/l of sweetness, but it has some pretty frisky acidity that deals with that. Aromas of apples, pears and yellow citrus decorate the nose and tempt the senses, whilst the palate is delicate and citrusy with a touch of honey giving away the sugar, a fine bubble, a touch of butteriness to the mouthfeel, and a dryish, chalky, refreshing finish.

Winemaker's Notes

Cava production is ‘methode champenoise’, called ‘metodo tradicional’ in Spain. Typically, only white grapes are used. Chardonnay is making inroads, but the traditional white varieties of the region predominate: Macabeo (macca-bow), picked earliest, growing best near the coast; Xarel.lo (char-rell-low) from the Penedes depression, and Parellada (pa-rey-yada) from the pre- coastal mountain range. Malo is rarely affected, due to the relative warmth of Penedes.

D.O. Cava is a curious wine region, as it is, technically, non-geographic. Mostly, Cava is produced in the wine region of Penedès, an hour south of Barcelona, and just inland from the coast. Although nearly all sparkling Cava is produced here, there are small productions licensed in other areas, and thus Cava is a D.O. which limits itself to concerns about how, not where, Cava is grown and made. That said, you may well go your whole life without tasting a non-Penedès Cava.

Cava comes in 3 main price/style bands. At the entry level, the best are delightfully simple, easy-to-drink apple-fresh + earth bubblers, and startling value. At the other end of the spectrum, there are some creatively expensive ‘Champagne’-styled wines with great depth and richness from long lees ageing, and in-between, a very, very good value spectrum where apple-earth-fresh meets yeasty leesy richness in a unique between-world.


Fine, steely thread of acid carries quiet honeyed richness (from a very slight sugar lift), florals, lemon jube. Lovely perfumed lift in back half and a delicious, saliva-inducing snappy finish. Great balance. 40% Macabeo/30% Xarel.lo/20% Parellada. 12 months lees ageing. 15 g/l residual sugar.

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