Cava is a sparkling wine of Denominación de Origen (DO) from Spain. It may be white or rosé. The Macabeo, Parellada and Xarel·lo are the most popular and traditional grape varieties for producing cava. Only wines produced in the traditional method may be labeled "cava. About 95% of all cava is produced in the Penedès area in Catalonia, Spain, with the village of Sant Sadurní d'Anoia being home to many of Catalan largest production houses. The two major producers are Codorníu and Freixenet.
In the past, cava was referred to as "Spanish champagne", which is no longer permitted under European Union law, since Champagne has Protected Geographical Status (PGS) and Spain entered the EU in 1986. Colloquially it is still called champán or champaña in Spanish or xampany in Catalan.
It has faint floral aromatics, a lemony flavor with a slightly bitter finish that tastes similar to green almonds. Xarel·lo on the other hand, is much more aromatic with rich floral aromas and pear/melon-like notes. The last grape, Paralleda, is blended for its ripping high acidity and zesty citrus flavors. Together the three Spanish grapes create a balanced sparkling wine that’s less sweet than Prosecco.