We have had a very entertaining month of March on our farm: we planted a new pinot noir vineyard. It is one of the most complicated varieties, but at the same time the ones that give rise to the most special wines and cavas. At Cavas Naveran, after many vintages and producing exceptional wines and cavas, we have become true pinot noir experts. If you join us, we will explain in detail this exciting new adventure in which we have entered and the fruits that we hope to obtain!
Can Parellada’s new pinot noir vineyard
Currently, the oldest pinot noir vines are the ones we planted in 1999 and used for the Perles Roses. In 2002 we planted more, up to 5 ha, and since then we have not increased our production. However, we had wanted to do it for a long time and now has been our moment. As we have said, pinot noir wines and cavas are very special and also valued, and hence the success we are having (especially in the export of Cava Brut Vintage Rose) and the need to have more grapes of this variety. That is why last March we planted this 2’2 ha vineyard, so we can have 8 ha of pinot noir in the Penedès.
The month of March is ideal for planting a new vineyard. We did it at the end of the month basically for two reasons: one because there is almost no danger of frost and the other to take advantage of the April and May rains. In this way, we avoid watering at the beginning, when the vines are very small and need more water and mineral salts to grow.
The land where we have located the new pinot noir vineyard is mostly calcareous and clayey, and presents a certain unevenness. To minimize the slope, we have planted the new vineyard in two parts and it has been done on terraces. Thus, we get longer passes that facilitate care and, above all, harvest.
Normally, the vines are usually matted after a year, but we have chosen to do it now: we have placed canes in each vine, to form them and to have a reference when plowing. Now it will be necessary to wait until the fifth year from the plantation, that is, until 2026, to use the grapes from these young vines, which will be destined for the Brut Vintage Rose cava. The oldest pinot noir vineyards will be for the Perles Roses cava.
Pinot noir is a variety that has been cultivated for a long time in the Burgundy region of France, in a colder climate than the Mediterranean. This does not mean that it does not give good results in our country, if the measure is taken; and in fact, although it is not the most common variety, it is grown in regions of Catalonia such as the Pre-Pyrenees and the Penedès. Do you know that the first pinot noir cavas from the Penedès were those from our estate?
Pinot is a short cycle variety in the Mediterranean, it is normally harvested at the beginning of August, it is the first variety we collect at Naveran each harvest. You have to be very careful when deciding when to harvest because in a difference of a few days it matures very quickly and this can greatly increase the graduation of what will be the base wine to make cava. Instead, we do let one of the older pinot noir vines mature longer and harvest it at the end of August to get 12 ‘5-13 degrees to make Flor de Pinot wine.
On the other hand, it is a delicate variety. It is sensitive to such well-known pests as mildew and cluster moth. In addition, the grape it produces is compact and this makes it prone to rot. In short, you have to know the variety, take into account the consequences of the weather and closely follow the growth of the pinot noir strains to discover any variation. It is about finding the right time to harvest and obtain the unique wines and cavas that do justice to this variety.
More curiosities about pinot noir: grapes, wines and cavas.
As we have said, the grapes are compact, uniform and cone-shaped, reminiscent of the shape of a pineapple. Hence the name: Pinot (from pine, pine in French) . Pinot noir wines are much lighter than other red wines, as they have low levels of phenolic compounds and a very thin skin. This gives rise to the peculiar tones, from ruby to orange, with reflections of onion skin. In addition, they have little astringency and that gives them a soft and sweet touch. The aromas are complex: from red and forest fruits, through species such as pepper, to aromas more of the earth and vegetables.
Our pinot noir wines and cavas
For those of you who know it, you will already know that it is a very unique cava, a special product in our country. It is a monovarietal cava, 100% pinot noir and with a minimum of 24 months of aging. For the elaboration of the Naveran Perles Roses, the pinot noir grapes are picked first August with boxes to minimize maceration. Once in the cellar, they are gently pressed and fermented in stainless steel at a low temperature. After the draft, the second typical fermentation of the “Champenoise Method” takes place, that is, in the bottle with the addition of yeasts and sugars.
Its name comes from the small pale pink bubbles that slowly rise through the glass, forming the characteristic crown. At first, it will seem like a light cava, with a fine aroma. However, we will immediately notice that the varietal and aging character persists. In the mouth it is pleasant, full, unctuous and with an elegant and very long aftertaste. Thanks to this, we can accompany this cava with complex dishes, ideally paired with smoked products.
Naveran’s Perles Roses cava has had the honor of being awarded several prizes such as the AWC Vienna International Wine Challenge, with the silver medal; the Barcelona Rosé International Bubbles Awards, with the Gold medal; the Glass of Bubbly 2019 Champagne & Sparkling Wine Awards, with the Classic and Elegant Silver distinctions; and, finally, the gold medal in the 8th edition of the Sakura Japan Women ‘s Wine Awards (2021).
Brut Vintage Rose
The new pinot noir vineyard will be used to produce this versatile and original cava, made with 70% of the pinot noir variety and 30% of parellada. During the harvest, the collection of the grapes of these two varieties is done separately. Afterwards, we do a gentle pressing with a little maceration, so as not to increase the color and achieve its pale pink hue. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks, at a very low temperature. Once the base wine has finished fermentation, it is stabilized and filtered to proceed to the draft, to the second fermentation in the bottle and after twelve months of rest and maturation of the aging.
It presents a great aromatic intensity, with aromas of tropical fruits, especially red fruits, and with a touch of citrus. However, its flavor is light, pleasant and the bubbles are very well integrated, which contributes to its long flavor, but not prominent. All these characteristics make it an ideal cava for aperitifs, for example, it pairs very well with soft cheeses. However, its versatility makes it a good cava for all kinds of meals!
Flor de Pinot
It is a 95% pinot noir and 5% viognier wine. Pinot noir is pressed without maceration, to obtain its unique pale pink hue. Afterwards, it is fermented at a low temperature in stainless steel tanks.
If we taste it, we will notice the varietal character with fine and light aromas. In the mouth it is unctuous and with a very elegant and clear aftertaste. It is an interesting, aromatic, frank, creamy and persistent wine. This gives it a lot of versatility, but it pairs excellently with typical Mediterranean dishes, with rice and pasta.
If you try them, you will prove us right: it’s worth it!
Yes, we already know that André Tchelistcheff said what God made the cabernet sauvignon and the devil made the pinot noir … That it is a delicate variety and with a colder climate than ours … But at Caves Naveran we like the Adventures and this has lasted for many years and is giving us more than good results! And also special and surprising. Pinot noir wines and cavas are elegant, original, complex, smooth … If you try them, you will prove us right: it’s worth it!