Freixenet – Spanish Cava
Freixenet (pronounced "fresh-eh-net"), best known for its Cordon Negro, in the iconic black bottle, is a family-owned company that grew from humble beginnings in rural Catalunya. The roots of Freixenet stretch back to 1861 and are embedded in the history of two longstanding winemaking families, the Ferrers and the Salas, whose expertise, determination and ingenuity would intertwine to form the foundation of the company that today is the world leader in sparkling wines made using the traditional method of secondary fermentation in the bottle. Freixenet wines are produced using the méthode traditionelle process.
After primary fermentation and bottling, the wines are capped with crown caps and placed through a second fermentation process referred to as "ageing on lees". The wines are placed on special racks at a 45 degree angle so that the yeast sediments, or lees, can collect in the neck of the bottle. The ageing process takes between one and five years. During the ageing process, the lees must be consolidated for removal. This is achieved through a process known as riddling. The bottles are turned or rotated during the ageing process and this causes the lees to slowly settle in the neck of the bottle After ageing, the lees are removed through a process called disgorging, or dégorgement. The necks of the bottles are frozen and the caps removed. The pressure within the bottle forces the lees out. Immediately after disgorging, the bottles are topped off with the original base wine, and sugar is added, a practice referred to as dosage, before being corked, labelled and packed for shipment.
This double fermentation process has been used for centuries to make sparkling wines. It ensures the highest quality wines with more layers of complexity and fruit as well as better and more bubbles throughout the wine. Freixenet sparkling wine has always been made in this traditional process and delivers consistent quality in every bottle.