Monthly Archives: February 2013

What about the bitterness?

I have not had any Cava in two weeks now since we were away this weekend in a city with no bubbles except Champagne around. Incredible! So you can imagine how much I’m looking forward to happy Friday Cava tomorrow. But until then I thought I’d share some “Cava knowledge” with you.

I have been wondering were some of the finishing bitterness in some sparkling wines come from. So I wrote to my friend A. the winemaker and asked him.

He told me that it has to do with several things, so this is trying to explain some things that can effect the bitterness.

-Maturity: If you harvest the grapes to early you risk having green tannins (polyphenols) that may be extracted during the winemaking process which can result in bitterness. 

-Winemaking process: If you macerate the must with the skins, stems and pips inside the press, the bitter compounds within the skins, stems and pips might transfer to the must, making the risk higher to get bitterness in the final product. 

 The winemaker also has to be very careful with the pressing pressures and the juice fractions, since the more pressure the more yield which increases the risk for breaking the pips and stems and in doing so releasing bitter compounds to the juice. That is why free run juice is often the safest in this aspect.
 
So this is some of the reasons why you might find bitterness in some sparkling wines.
And with that said, some bitterness can by quite nice if found in the right place, but personally I’m not a big fan of a to apparent bitterness, but that is just me.

The Gourmand Cook Book Awards 2013: The big night

On the Saturday we attended the fair and talked to a lot of interesting people from the wine world, both other authors and people just visiting. Many publishers were sharing ideas and titles to spread their books to other markets.
All the nominated books were put up on show to the public’s great interest.

The award ceremony started at 8 pm and we were there together with my publisher Grenadine, and other authors from Sweden nominated in different categories. It was a lot of categories and it took a very long time to reach the wine awards at the end.

To the left, happy Eliq with the prize Grenadine received for “Best publisher 2012”. To the right some of the Swedish winners. Unfortunately I was not one of them, but just being nominated is fantastic, which means that I have written one of the five best books in Europe 2012. That is really much more than I could ever hope for.

The fair and the awards were held at the bottom floors of the Louvre and during the day it was crowded with tourists, going to the shops and the museum. On our way home the Louvre was completely deserted which was a strange feeling. Both inside and outside we were alone in the cold windy air. But a nice walk home to the hotel along the Seine which was almost overflowing with “spring water”.

Even though we did not win the award or managed to find a single bottle of Cava on our tours around the restaurants and wine shops, it was a nice and fruitful weekend. And now I at least know that Paris is not a place to go if you want to enjoy anything else but French wine. 🙂 Even though I like Paris, I would rather go to Barcelona, every time I had a choice.

Me and Andréas would also like to thank Institut del Cava for helping us with planing the trip! We are so grateful for all your help!

The Gourmand awards 2013: The hunt for Cava in Paris

The problem with Paris, is that it is full of Champagne. Not that I don’t like Champagne, on the contrary. But when you are in Paris to promote a book about Cava, the focus will naturally be Cava… (…like every other day)

We landed around lunchtime and started our quest right away. Although the weather was everything but inspiring, we made our way to a Brasseri to have lunch. We realised quickly that there was no Cava on the menu, and that the beer was very expensive… a 33cl Heineken for 7,5€, while Bordeaux and Bourgogne and any other French wine was a bargain. You might wonder if there was wine from any other country on the menu?  Of course not this is France! 😉

We continued after lunch to explore some wine shops, to try our luck. No Cava, No other wine except French, I’m not kidding. So we had a look at some more menus at restaurants without luck. So we went home to rest.

At 21.30 we had a table booked at Chez Janou, that our friend Joel had helped us with since we don’t speak a word of French.

A fantastic small restaurant in the middle of a residential area, packed with people and so small tables that Andréas could hardly fit his elbows on it. Wonderful food, cozy and wonderful service, but NO CAVA. So we went home on a Friday without having had a single glass of Cava which was quite disturbing.

But altogether it was a great day, even though the weather was against us and the lack of Cava was profound.

The book is officially out in Sweden

It is Friday and that means Happy Friday Cava!

We are leaving in just 15 minutes to go and have dinner with some of our very good friends, and of course we are bringing Cava! I just love Fridays in that way.

But I also just want to let everybody know that the Swedish version of the book “Cava bubblande glädje” is now out in stores. This picture was taken by my good friend Elisabeth at Akademibokandeln. So now it is easy to get as well!

Happy Friday and have a good weekend everyone!