Looking back at 2012 part two

After May and the fantastic trip we had, it was back to work and at the same time finishing up the book. During the summer we did manage to have some wonderful cava moments and many of them were out sailing.

To finish up the book was very hard work but we made it and at the end of August the book came finally from the printer. And we had a great book release in Uppsala.

We presented some of the producers that we have learned to know, and the guests got information about them and an opportunity to try some great cava available in Sweden.

During the later parts of the summer the cavabook and cava in general was seen in Swedish press.

The spanish wine day in Stockholm took place in the middle of september. I had the opportunity to host a tasting with 35 happy wine lovers. And they got the chance to try cavas from Marques de Monistrol, Juvé y Camps, Mestres and Gramona, everything very happily received by the participants. And I was so glad to be able to talk about cava, and spread the word.

Josep from Mestres came up to visit Alambic, and I hope that we will soon see some of their cavas here in sweden.

Then in October it was time for Cava tast and the presentation of the book in Sant Sadurní!

Cava tast grand opening!Last preparation before the presentation. I was so happy and moved that so many showed up and that people were so involved in my project. It was truly a fantastic experience.  

the girls liked the book!

Then we got ready for cava tast in the evening with wonderful cava and the opportunity to meet this years cava queen. A fantastic evening with our friends!

We were also so extremely lucky to be invited to stay at Raventós i Blanc, and they took so good care of us, so we wish that we could move there! We feel truly honored to have such friends. And of course we hope to be able to come back. :-)

We cooked on the BBQ outside, almost every day and could enjoy the fantastic cava the house makes. De Nit, the pale rosé made by Ravenós i Blanc is truly one of my favorites. But we managed to try most of their portfolio and I'm very glad that we do get some of their great cavas in Sweden.

 

 

 

 

One day we took a trip in to Barcelona to visit Quim in the Boqueira, and to leave him a book as promised. And I had the chance to have my favorite on the menu; caramelized foi. We just love El Quim and really long for coming back to have lunch again.

The 13th of October Andréas had his birthday and we went to Florian and Veronica at Cal ruget so have some dinner. And they had made it so nice that we could not have wished fore anything better! and they had bought Andréas a cake!

The day after Andréas had to go home and I moved in with my dear friends Rosó and Partic. And we started to visit Colomer where we had a fantastic time!

The big event after Andréas had left was the tasting Recaredo held for the anniversary of Reserva Particular. A fantastic event with old  vintages of exceptional quality.

After the amazing tasting we got equally amazing food in the winery. El Cellar de Can Roca made the food and it was amazing to say the least!

I visited Valformosa on a very sunny morning and had a wonderful tour with Angel, who showed me around. And I also had the chance to try a wide ranch of their great cavas.

 

 

 

Me and my wonderful hosts also visited Marues de Gelida and tried one of their bio cavas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I also went to se Toni at Torelló, on the way towards Gelida. And I really do not understand why I have not visited them before. I had a great time there and Toni showed me the production and told me about the family history which was extremely interesting. Next time I'll bring Andréas along.  Toni also showed me a fantastic new press that I had not seen before. A way of filling the press with gas (I don't remember which one) so the grapes has no way to oxidize. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I came home and started working again, I fond Vilarnau Cava when I was flying from a very small airport in sweden. I was very surprised but very happy! Cava is spreading!

 

 

Then The Swedish book came! And now the work is done. English and Swedish version done and printed, and now will will see what happens.

In november I also found out that I had been picked out  among all swedish wine books this year as the "best wine book in the world (Except france)" in the Gourmand cook book awards, and now I have made it to the final in February. It is me against 4 outer books. So now I cross my fingers!

At the end of the year we needed to get all our books and papers ready for the tax office and to make it a bit more fun we found a Cordon negro in the fridge! Jiipii!

 

 

 

 

And just before christmas I read in the biggest swedish daily paper that Raventós i Blanc's brut nature was recommended with 6 out of 6 points, which indicates "a bargain" in that papers terms. I was so happy for my friends at Raventós and for all cava lovers!

 

 

 

Then New years eve came and we had a great dinner with our frineds at our house with lots of great cava. A fantastic way to end 2012!

 

I have probably forgot many wonderful things that happend this year. But I have such a mess among my photos, and I do know that many are missing. But I think I got most of it.

 

Now I just want to wish you all a fantastic 2013, and I hope that it will be a great one with a nice harvest and a lot of new chances to explore new cavas and meet new producers and cava lovers!

Happy New Year!!

 

Looking back on 2012 part one

Hope that all of you have had a nice Christmas and a fantastic start to the new year. I know I have. But this first weekend of 2013 I really feel like looking back on the year that has passed and remember the good things. Because there has been so many! So here I pressent to you my Cava year 2012.

January I was invited by Institut del Cava to learn about pruning. I just love to learn all these things and it was great to visit both old and new friends around Sant Sadurní.

I visited Recaredo and learned about pruning. The brown part is dead... I think it was

Pruning is not as easy as you think because every wine has to be treated differently.

I went to Juvé y Camps and here they were stacking bottled in rima, for the long rest.

 

I also learned how to prune bush wines at the beautiful vine yards of Espiells, among other things.

I also went to Raventós i Blanc for the first time and got a tour of their beautiful vine yards. I was also treated to a wonderful lunch and met Mr Raventós, which was very inspiring indeed.

I of course went to see Eva at Vilarnau to see how things were going. Here I learned about how to check the moisture in the earth.

At Parés Balta I could discuss even more pruning with Joan and Barbara, who also showed me their experiment on some wines, where they had not pruned for three years. It looked very much like something that could have been growing around sleeping beauty.

At Mont Marcal many of the vines were already pruned, and could have a look at the different ways the wines had been treated depending on age and verity. Here a very old Xarel-lo with "pistolas".

Then i had to go home to cold sweden and try to finish the book. Always nice to be home but it is very cold indeed.

We also had to finish up with some photos for the recipes for the book.

In May we loaded up the car and took our best friends Kajsa and Martin, and drew down to Sant Sadurní, to show them our favorite places.

I promise that the car had doors and a roof most of the time. But Paul the car also needed to have some fun in the warmth.

Beautiful Montserrat!

We tried to do some exercise.

We visited Mestres, which was fantastic, and with a great tour and tasting.

One day  we spent with Ramón at Giró i Giró. A tour of the cellar, and production...

Ramón taught Andréas how to disgorge a bottle of cava, with great result.

The girls were supervising...

Then the boys were in charge of the BBQ, which was truly delicious!

One day we visited Ton at Recaredo and got a chance to check on Turo d'en Mota.

We also met Bru who was working hard as usual.

At Vilarnau, Eva showed me around the lab.

and taught me about pressure and how to count yeast cells.

Back at Juvé y Camps, I got the chance to check up on the vines I pruned in January. They semd to all have survived.

Then we tried a swedish produced wine that we had brought, and compared it to on of the JyC wines. Interesting...

Kajsa and Martin went to Barcelona one day and visited El Quim in the Boqueria, among other things.

We went to Parés Baltà and looked at their bees

Josep showed us the waterfall...

...and we were really happy about that

And we of course tried fantastic wines! And a lot of wine was packed in to the car and we were very happy.

Me and Andréas visited Josi at Llopart, and learned about green pruning

Llopart has wonderfully beautiful wine yards overlooking Sant Sadurní and Montserrat.

I also think that our future dream house is on Llopart property. :-) Even though I know that Josi told us that they were thinking about renovating it up them selves to use it.

We visited Mascaró in Vilafranca

Here we tried a lot of nice cava and spirits, but most exiting was a 100% parellada cava from 1994 (I think it was). But some very very nice things came with us back home.

We stayed at our favorite place Cal Ruget of course

Florian and Veronica took us to the saturday market in Vilafranca and we paused to have a glass of refreshment. A very nice day, and so great to spend some more time together.

After some intense days we loaded up the car to go back.

It was a fantastic trip and we are doing it again this year, but under some kind of different forms. We just love to visit new and old friends and every time we learn something new.

To be continued...

 

The #Happy_Friday_Cava of the year?

This passed Friday we had the book release, and after coming back to Stockholm on the Friday afternoon, having spent some work days in the south of Sweden, we had quite a lot to do. Luckily the books had arrived at the event location after some trouble with the shipping company, so we at least had something to show. It took longer than we thought to set up the rooms and had to call in friends to help with fixing the refreshments, setting up tables, flowers and everything else. (Thank you so much all of you who helped!! ) But we made it in time and managed to get all the Cava loaded up in the fridge in the bar in time. Four producers, Freixenet, Codorníu, Vilarnau and Recaredo, who all have products available at the special ordering section at monopoly here in Sweden, had most kindly contributed with Cava. I wanted to try to get the guests to try something else that they could easily order to spread their interest a little wider.

When the guests arrived I held a little speech about the book,the ideas and the people I had not been able to do without during the process and what the evening had in store with the Cava available to try and what is special about these houses. Then started the signing of the books, answering questions about the Cava the guests were trying and welcoming more friends and their friends coming late.

During the evening we had about 100 people enjoying fantastic Cava and the response was great! People were so positive and everyone found a favourite among the bubbles. Many guests also admitted that they often buy Cava but do not know much about it, so now they were so happy to be able to learn more. And to my delight quite a lot of guests asked me about good places to stay and visit when going to Penedés, since they thought the pictures we showed during the evening  was so inspiring.

A fantastic evening with so much positive energy that I'm glad to have been able to spread to at least hundred people.

Thank you so much everyone who contributed to a fantastic evening! And thank you Freixinet, Codorníu, Recaredo and Vilarnau for making such fantastic Cava that people just love for their own differences and qualities!

More pictures are coming soon I hope.

Busy busy. So many things and so little time!

I just don't get it, where does all my time go?Of course I work full time and then I have the book coming out and a lot of things to fix around that, and on top of everything I have a house and a small garden to take care of and wonderful friends and a family I want to spend time with! 24 hours on a day is just not enough and I wish I could fill in some application to apply for some more hours. But I am really not complaining because I have a wonderful life.

To get you all up to speed with how things are moving along with the book, I'm happy to announce that it is scheduled to arrive on my doorstep the last week of August, and I am so excited I could die. That same week on the 31st of August I welcome all of you who are in or close to Uppsala (Sweden) to come to the official Swedish book-release. There will be books and the opportunity to taste some Cava's that are only available on our special ordering section at the monopoly. It will be a great #Happy_Friday_Cava event with full focus on these fantastic bubbles and some of the fantastic producers!

In September I will be hosting a Cava tasting during the "Spanish wine days" at Grand Hotel in Stockholm and it will be open for the public. I am doing this together with Institute del Cava and the Spanish board of commerce here in Sweden (ICEX). I will bring my book of course, so if you cant come to Uppsala you have a second chance to get a sighed ex.

In october 7-9th I'll be in Sant Sadurni d'Anoia during Cavatast to distribute the book, and hopefully we will have the official Spanish book release. But I am still awaiting Institute del Cava's decision regarding this, and they are right now enjoying some well deserved vacation.

And then I have some new plans until x-mas. So you see, I'm keeping my self busy!

In the spring, me and my lovely husband Andréas will start on the next Cava book. So stay tuned!

Last minute fixing

On Friday is the day when the book goes to print. As I have waited! I'm more excited than I could ever explain, as I'm sure you understand. Now I'm only waiting for my fantastic layout guy to fit the back text on the book and chose one or several pictures, and then it is all done!

By chance I have planed a Cava tasting at home in Uppsala, and as of now we will be 16 happy people, tasting Cava and enjoying some BBQ together. And now we have an other reason to celebrate!

 

We'll see if any of these pictures of me will be on the back of the book

 

 

Lay out almost done!

I'm sorry for being so absent but my mind has been elsewhere. The reason for that is the book, and now it is almost done. The layout only misses two pictures (since the once we planed were to small), and to night I'm doing the last proof reading. It will be great and very much like I imagined it.

I could not have done it alone though, because this last period has taken so much energy and last minute alteration, and without my fantastic friend Frida who has taken so many great last minute pictures, and my new friend Micke who has helped me with designing the cover, I would not have made it. Or the book would not have been as good anyway.

Here is the first lay out of the cover and some of Frida's pictures that I just love! Enjoy and stay tuned because you'll soon get more updates!

News about the book

Many people are asking me about the book and when it will be available. And actually I have some news now!I talked to the publisher yesterday, when he called me just as we were going in to the Sagrada familia. And we decided that we will start with the lay out now when we come home from Barcelona. The first issue will be printed in english, so if you are one of the people looking forward to the spanish or swedish version, you will most likely have to wait until the beginning of next year. The translation takes time you know. But you will be able to get a copy in english at least at the end of the summer, at the beginning of August if all goes well.

I know there are quite a few of you in the states that have been asking me when you can buy the book and unfortunately the book won't be available in the US in this first issue, but probably the second issue that will come in the beginning of next year. But if you want one now just send me an e-mail, and I'll send you a book and we'll fix the matter of payment some how. It is a pretty great christmas gift together with a bottle of cava, wouldn't you say? The price is not final yet, but will most likely be around 20-22 Euros.

As you can imagine I'm pretty excited, and I can't wait to finally hold the book in my hands after all this work!

Here are some of all the pictures we have taken this trip and we'll se if any of them will get a place in the final book. Enjoy!

Cava friends are the best of friends.

Cava is a passion. It is hard to explain to someone how does not share this passion. Or to be honest it is hard to explain it to anyone who does not understand. This is why I love meeting up with my Cava firends. Because we always have a comon goal... to share Cava with others and to share our passion. Tonight I had the luck to be in Copenhagen at the same time as one of my cava friends. It was so nice, since I have not seen her since january and I do admit that I feel quite isolated up here in Sweden. So it was some refreshing hours to get some news and to talk to someone of the same mind set. Soon I'll be in Penedés again where I some how feel at home, although I don't know the language yet. But still I feel at home in my heart. Soon I'll drive among the hills on the small roads, with fear for my life, on my way to a small cava producer and all will be again as it should.

Thank you Ana for a lovely evening!

Have you thought about life lately?

I just came in after a very short run (the second this year), and while standing in my very small kitchen stretching, looking out over the river that flows past our house, I came to think about life. I have a very good life. A VERY good life indeed! I can't say that I miss anything in it. Well an Aston Martin Vanquish would always be nice of course... ;-)Well I honestly can't think of anything I really need, not for real.

I have a fantastic husband, my family that is always there for me and really close by, more friends that I could ever wish for, I am not ill, I have a great job that I love going to every day and I live in the most beautiful place! I am really all set. And I really hope you are too. Think about it... what really matters?

On top of all this I can eat great food every day (since my fantastic husband is such a great cook!) and I have my Cava in the cellar. So to make this day and this life even better, I'll go and get one of those bottles and start up dinner. And while cooking I'll think about that I'll soon be in Penedès again. Just two weeks to go!!

 

Tursday = international women's day

On March the 8th every year we celebrate the international women's day!And it makes me think about what a great life I have, and that not everyone is as lucky. There are women that are not allowed to go to school, vote, drive a car, or even go out on the street without a male relative. It makes me sick just to think of it.

So on Thursday, how trivial it all sounds, I will donate some extra money to breast cancer research and open a bottle of Cava and toast to all those strong women that are fighting for their rights around the world!

And what is a more perfect Cava to celebrate with, then Gramona's Pinot noir that they have made especially to support breast cancer research!?  But if you cant find that particular one, just make sure you celebrate!