Wine tasting at Cava Privada in Montevideo, Uruguay

Karin Ledl
by Karin Ledl
The outside of Cava Privada Club de Vinos in Montevideo, Uruguay is very similar to other houses in the older area of Pocitos where it is located: white facades, high windows, and a few steps that lead up to a wrought iron door. But once you cross the threshold an amazing thing happens. Instead of being confronted with antique walls, the interior is modern and minimalist, creating the perfect setting for the discussion, analysis, and finally, the thorough enjoyment of the beverage of gods and heroes alike. Indeed, wine and champagne are the protagonists of the evening.

As we sit down at a large white table, the sommelier introduces herself and starts to explain the concept of Cava Privada. It is a club that is dedicated to wine and everything around it, offering courses, visits to wineries, and each month a special selection of wines both from large and boutique wineries. The special wine selections are usually not available to the general public for at least six months after they are offered to Cava Privada members. Cava Privada also offers cheeses especially selected to pair with the wines of the month.

Cava Privada sommelier serving the first bottle of the evening
Then the first bottle of the evening is opened. It is a white wine, a Chardonnay/Trebbiano from Carrau winery. A green-yellowish color, it has subtle aromas of pear with a hint of violets. It is smooth and balanced, and a pleasure to begin our wine tasting evening.

Five more wines are to follow: a Cabernet Sauvignon from Salto Chico winery, a Cabernet Sauvignon from Chiapella winery, a Cabernet Franc from Altos de la Ballena, a Tannat/San giovese from Nero Dávola winery and finally, a Tannat Barrique Select from DeLucca winery. All of them were paired correctly with two kinds of cheeses.

The Cabernet Franc is worth a special mention, a exquisitely well balanced, velvety dark violet wine. Aromas of Olive and raspberry with a slight hint of dark plums enchant both the nose and the tongue. Between each wine the sommelier explains the different grape varieties of Uruguay, their qualities, the history of the vineyards, and wine production processes. Perfect food pairings were also discussed, and so we learned that a goat cheese brings out unexpected flavors in any red wine, especially Tannats and Syrahs.

Cava Privada Club de Vino wine tasting group
It was a very interesting evening shared with a small group of people.

Citing Pablo Neruda´s “Ode to wine”:
“Day-colored wine,/night-colored wine,/wine with purple feet/ or wine with topaz blood,/wine,/starry child/of earth,/wine, smooth/as a golden sword,/soft/as lascivious velvet,/wine, spiral-seashelled/and full of wonder,/amorous,/marine;/never has one goblet contained you,/one song, one man,/you are choral, gregarious,/at the least, you must be shared.(…)”

And Cava Privada Club de Vinos offers a perfect setting for sharing this precious wine, fruit of grapes, sun and earth, rich in memories and expectant with possibilities. Cheers!

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