Happy New year!

It’s incredible how a year passes by! Now in the morning of the last day of 2018 it really plays out like a film in my mind. So many things I’ve done and learned!

 But now we are soon entering 2019 and it will all be history for sure.
I’m excited about the new year, maybe more excited than in a very long time.

 I truly hope that you are excited about your upcoming 2019, and that you will have a smashing New Year’s Eve, with lots of celebrations!

 

A big hugs and cheers from me to you!

Empty glasses are better glasses

I am a very lucky person. Do you know why?I have people I love with whom I can share my glasses of cava. I have friends and family to listen to my stories and who share my happiness and worries. I know it might sound obvious, but it really isn’t. It is really everything that matters, when you come to think of it and I do very often, although maybe not as often as I should.

Today we had the happy occasion to celebrate our newest neighbour’s first birthday. She had it a bit rough coming in to this world, so it was really worth remembering and thinking about. We were all so worried a year ago, and today we had almost forgotten.

Looking at the four empty glasses on the table I realised, as the neighbours were just going home, that this is what is really interesting. It was like the glasses had absorbed our whole conversation, as they now held the memories. As I was washing the glasses by hand (very unlike me…) I pondered a bit over our conversations.

It is really easy to forget the everyday things that makes life what it is, and it is easies still to forget what is really important.

Last week we lost a very good friend to cancer. It was all very sudden, unexpected and way way before his time. Since his passing, memories of our travels and good times have been rolling in my memories like a film at the cinema. Many of the memories we have shared and things we have talked about, have been over a glass of cava. So many empty glasses, all containing so many stories and memories.

I’m fortunate to have empty glasses in plural. Just imagine how it would be in singular…

I miss you Lars

1 wedding, 12 arrests and 2 thunderstorms.

We are back after a busy week in Penedes. I just cant believe we got so much done while having kids and the family to consider all the time.  But with a constant focus on the wedding ahead and all the cava, food guests and other logistics I guess it is easy to just loose track. It turned out great though as you can see form the pictures. But we were lucky...  

At midday on Friday when rehearsal dinner was planed for 6 pm and all things started to get set up, the Penedes thunderstorm was upon us. If you have experienced them you know what I mean. Heavy rain and thunder for about one hour, and then gone. There is always a risk the storm brings his brother after a while, but ont this time! The weather cleared and we got an amazing starry sky to accompany  us al evening. History repeats itself on the wedding day morning, and the bride askes me if I think that this morning rain was "it"... I happily reply "Of course! There is normally only one shower a day here, if it rains at all.". She was happy and calmed by my answer and I prayed to the weather Gods that they would give us a break at least during ceremony and dinner. They did! Another amazing night sky with blazing starrs, and the Penedes that me and Andreas have learned to love so much, really showed her best side.

But nothing can be really just joyful and happy can it? After the arrest in Barcelona of 12 Catalan politicians on the Wednesday and following protests, my mind was constantly jumping back to my friends in the area and their situation. The amounts of flaggs showing the support for Catalan independence, grew in quantity from Thursday on. Driving through the villages and on the countryside they were now numerous, hanging from houses and light poles. I don't want to worry for the situation Catalonia vs. Madrid and I haven't so far, but now the game seems to change and  I'm not so sure anymore.

I sit here in Sweden surrounded by the cava made by my friends in Catalonia and my heart is with them.

Ett bord för två/a table for two - a podcast

Yesterday I had the pleasure of being the guest at the podcast "ett bord för två"/"A table for two". This podcast is produced by Vinguiden, with Michael Anderquim as the captain of the ship. A truly nice series I must say, since I did listen to most of the podcasts as "homework" before I sat down at Michaels table. Interesting guests and many intriguing topics. A table for two is a personal and informative podcast where all the guests have something special to bring to the table, both when it comes to stories, life experience and an actual physical wine! The tradition that both the guests and Michael brings one wine each and tells the story behind why they choose this particular wine is very interesting indeed. After listening to a couple of podcasts I found myself wondering and guessing what the guest in question would bring... Pretty obvious I brought a cava. To be more exact Celler Batlle from Gramona which happened to be the best cava I had in the cellar, and also being one of my all time favorites!

If you feel like listning to the podcast and my and Michaels little talk, it will go live on the 13th of september. But be aware that it is in Swedish. you will find the pod on Acast or through the website www.vinguiden.se

 

Hasta luego, Hasta próxima or Hasta pronto?

Three weeks in and the Spanish is progressing you might think? Well I guess it does, but in the back of our heads where we don't notice. My mind still goes blank in restaurants, and I sometimes find my self repeating verbs... Yo tengo, tú tiene, el/ella tienes, nosotros tenemos, tienen...Its like my mind is constantly occupied with kids, cava, Instagram, friends, food, excursions, times to keep, book keeping, taxes and on top of it all Spanish. My brain must think I'm insane to try to learn something new in a already overloaded and over heated state of mind. Well we will see if I can make it fly or if I'll crash and burn.

Three weeks in with people coming and going Andreas and I have that strange feeling that we just came, and at the same time that we have been here for ever. Even though our departure is just one and a half week away, thinking about going home feels strange and unnatural. I suppose that is one of the signs of us growing accustom to Penedés and that we honestly see it as our second home. Its a nice feeling. Hopefully we will have the chance to spend more time here since we are now looking for a hose to rent long term, and maybe we will look at some houses next week. Its all very exciting and that would mean that all of you reading the blog could come here and rent it. Since we will then also rent it to friends when we are not there our selves. I'll tell you more about it when it happens.

One thing that I think I have got a grip on though is the meaning of these "good buy"-fraces... Hasta pronto = we will see each other soon and you know it will be during that same day. Hasta Luego = we will se each other soon but don't know exactly when. Hasta proxima= we will see each other later and that can be a day a week or a month. Who knows. Hasta mañana = see you tomorrow.

Beeing a security junky or letting go?

Most of us have a steady job. We need it to pay the bills. Life works that way even though it’s boring. Someone owns you 8 hours a day and tells you what to do, when you can have vacation and when to come in extra. I have always been a security junky, who thought being employed was the only sensible thing to do. But this was until I met Andreas. He has NEVER been employed, but worked more than most people I know. He gave me the push I needed 2009, to follow my passion that later would end up in hundreds of tastings, two books, and a whole new life, and now he has done it again!

To make a long story short, Andreas has given me the confidence to “quit my day job”  (or at least take a leave of absence)  and work in our family’s firm full time. It’s not that I don’t like my job at the big brewery, it’s the commuting that is killing me!

So what will I do exactly you might wonder?

Well… I will blog more, host tastings again (this year’s program is coming up soon on the website), act as an impartial cava consultant, represent and sell Wearing Memories, continue on the new book! AND since none of the above brings any cash to the dinner table, I will also lease myself out to help with other companies bookkeeping, since I have a history in economics and keep our company’s books.

Then we of course have many new ideas for the company, but all in due Corse.

So if you know anyone who needs a part time economic assistant that can also do great tastings at the company’s staff party, give me a ring! J

But for most of you this change will mean that you will get more steady reports on cava here on the blog, and the opportunity to try some cava if you have the possibility to go to Uppsala.

So I hope to see and hear mor from you all on both Instagram, Facebook and on mail, because you know I love the dialog and contact with all of you!

Why visit an Island that has no wine?

I recently came home from Capo Verde, after two weeks’ vacation. For you who don’t know this place so good I can give you a short overview. Capo Verde is a group of islands, ten in fact. They are situated outside the African west coast almost on the equator. This makes the weather very stable, around 24-27 C with a slight breeze and sun basically every day. Pretty nice if you like that sort of thing.

The two main tourist islands are Bona Vista and Sal, and we visited the latter. The problem with these two islands is that they are made of sand and they produce NOTHING!! And when I say nothing I mean nothing! The only thing there is on Sal (and I presume it counts for Bona Vista too) is sand, tourists and tuna fish. The beaches are as you can understand wonderful! Sand… IMG_4467

The tuna that you get yourself on the pier in St Maria is straight from the ocean and super cheap (4-5€/kg), so if you can cook that’s super. You can of course get the same tuna at the local restaurants but to be honest, very few know how to cook it, and it is often fried dry.

My biggest problem was not the lack of everything though, but more to the point the lack of wine.  Since Cabo Verde is situated where it is it does not produce good because of the warm climate (it completely lacs acid). The islands that produce wine are mountain islands, but clearly these mountains are not high enough.

So as a self-catering tourist you are completely in the hands of the importers that import EVERYTHING to the island. Except tuna…

IMG_4309

And I find the problem to be this; Most people that come to Sal stay at the “All-inclusive resorts” and these import everything by themselves, while the natives are (mostly) very poor and I don’t think they prioritize to buy wine. So the population for whom there is imported wine is the stores, is the few tourists that cater for themselves and for a selected few natives. This group must be very slim indeed since it is very hard to find anything better than a Portuguese table wine that you can afford, or want to buy. We found one bottle of standard Moët on a shelf for 999 €. That might explain the wine situation.

IMG_0099So the question is why you would choose to freely go to an island for two weeks where there is literally no wine, bubbles, red or white… Well the beaches are fantastic and so is the weather, so they are perfect for getting a good tan and reading a book. If you like surfing and kite-surfing you have probably been on these islands already. And there is always tuna and the local beer Strela!  Will I go back? Yes probably, but then I’ll stay at a hotel.

IMG_4129

Soon we are off to CavaTast

It is just to good to be true, but soon we are off to Penedès! Saturday we leave to see the friends again.I have had regular report about the harvest, but it will be nice to see the end of it with my own eyes. This last week many of the producers were harvesting parellada while the weather was bit shaky. But what I heard most of it was good and not effected by the rain.

I promise to give you as much news as possible while we are there. The safest news stream from me will be Instagram, since it is so easy and I know how you all enjoy news through pictures. :-)

We are running very low on cava...

The problem with loving cava in Sweden, is that the diversity available is not what it should...Luckily we have a friend in Denmark, who imports some really great cavas, but unfortunately we have been bit short on time to go visit and stock up, due to the children. Yes I blame the children. ;-)

But for you living in Denmark or who happens to be close to Århus, I can very much recommend to check out Lars website! http://www.vildmedcava.com

Among other houses he has available you will find: -Bertha -Castel d'Age -Torelló -Muscándia -Jaume Giró i Giró -Castel Sant Antoni

 

Weekend in Kiev

This weekend we are going to Kiev to visit friends, while baby E stays home with grandma and grandpa.  Checking up abit on the bubbles in Kiev I found out that there is actually a sparkling wine producer in Kiev. Asking my Ukrainian friend about it she said: you know it is an old USSR producer... But it might be interesting to see the production. 

Since it is 32 c in Kiev right now and the weather seems to be stable over the weekend, we will just see what's on the agenda. But I promise to let you know all I can find out about the eastern bubbles! 😉