The Plus and Plus Brut (or +&+ on the label) is a non-vintage blend of 3 indigenous Catalonian grapes, 30% Xarello, 50% Macabeo, and 20% Parellada has grown on the Penedes region of eastern Spain, near Barcelona. The +&+ is produced by Bodegas Pinord a family-run winery that was founded over 150 years ago. Cava is produced with the same production methods as Champagne, the 2nd fermentation occurs inside each and every bottle. This is a non-reserve Cava and the regulations say second fermentation has to last a minimum of 9 months, each winery may choose to go longer if they wish. Bodegas Pinord says this Bubbly was in bottle for more than 12 months. While Cava is made in the same manner as Champagne it is priced closer to Prosecco. I found this Bubbly for $9.99 and there are several well-distributed Cavas selling for under 10 dollars. Reserve Cava and Grand Reserve Cava can get pricey, but you seldom see them on store shelves. It seems that when folks want to spend big bucks on Bubbly they go with Champagne. But Cava provides a great deal of value in the budget-friendly category. Brut indicates that this is a dry (not sweet) Bubbly and the alcohol content is 11.5%.
The Tasting Notes
The color is pale gold with a flurry of tiny bubbles. The nose is melon, dried stone fruit, lemon hard candy peach, lemon, apple, a little brioche bread, and lime. This is a tart flavorful Cava with a good slap of acidity. It starts with not sweetened grapefruit, sour apple, dried pear, and lemon curd. The mid-palate offers smooth peach, a little minerality, and a touch of cream. The acidity is ample, but not bothersome to the palate. Which is a fancy way of saying it isn’t sharp and doesn’t bite. The finish is subtle but lengthy.
- Here is the thing to remember about budget Bubbly, especially non-vintage Sparkling wine. The wine-maker knows what the wine will taste like before they start. The wine is heavily manipulated, they ferment it twice, then at the end, they blend it with previous vintages to get the exact blend right. Who made the Bubbly is the most important information a wine drinker needs. Each producer has their own house style, that applies to the most expensive Champagne to the cheapest Cremant. Sparkling wine producers from the same village can taste completely different. Don’t just but a Cava, Prosecco, or Champagne. Take the time to find the producers that please you, this is easier with Cava and Prosecco where the prices almost always fall under 20 bucks.