Codorníu 

The history of Codorníu is the story of eighteen generations of a vine-growing family.  In 1872, Josep Raventós made the first bottle of cava, applying the traditional method to a blend of the Penedès grape varieties: Macabeo, Xarel·lo and Parellada.  Codorníu reflects the history, tradition, passion and expertise of a family winery with more than 450 years of history, which today continues to maintain its leading position in the production of quality wines and cavas.  The cellars in Sant Sadurní d’Anoia were declared a National Historic Artistic Monument in 1976, as one of the key works of Catalan modernism, created by Puig i Cadafalch.

Penedès - Cava

Designation of Origin

3,035 hectares

Area of vineyland

History

Codorníu is Spain's longest-standing producer of wine and cava. It is a symbol of continuity, innovation and loyalty to its origins.  Celebration has been Codorníu's vocation from the outset and its optimistic spirit of living every moment of life to the full remains intact.

The history of Codorníu is the story of a vine-growing family that dates back to the sixteenth century, making it the oldest winery in Spain.  In 1551, the family already owned winemaking presses and barrels in Sant Sadurní d’Anoia, where Codorníu still has its premises to this day. 

In 1659, the marriage between Anna, Codorníu's heiress, and Miquel Raventós, brought together two winemaking dynasties.  Their heirs took the Raventós name, but Anna's surname, Codorníu would go on to become a brand name of international prestige that lives on today.

In 1872, Josep Raventós redirected the family business to become a pioneer in the production of cava, when he created the first bottle of sparkling wine made by applying the traditional method to a blend of the native grape varieties of Penedès: Xarel·lo, Macabeo and Parellada.

The grapes that were traditionally used to make cava were Macabeo, Xarel·lo and Parellada, forming the so-called "cava triology," or traditional varieties.

Codorníu was a pioneer in the introduction of new varieties to Spain, such as Chardonnay in 1984 and Pinot Noir in 2002 (both originally from Burgundy.)

Cava is a high-quality sparkling wine made in Spain using the Traditional Method, originally called the Méthode Champenoise. Its principal characteristic is that the second fermentation of the blend of wines takes place in the bottle.  It is during this process that the cava bubbles appear and it acquires its unique taste. 

The bottles settle in the cellars for at least nine months.  The different styles of cava depend on the period of ageing: Cava de Guarda (9 to 12 months' ageing), Reserva (at least 18 months' ageing), Gran Reserva (at least 30 months' ageing) and Cava de Paraje Calificado (at least 36 months' ageing and from a single vineyard with special characteristics.)

Wine tourism

Codorníu has been a synonym for celebration from the outset, and this philosophy remains intact. We encourage you to live a life of celebration: immerse yourself in getting to know the winery and raise a glass to life in the place where the very first bottle of cava in history was born.

Visiting Codorníu is to take a journey into the origin and history of cava. Discover the process of making cava in great detail, learn how to appreciate cava with a beginner's tasting course or enjoy an aperitif in Els Jardins de Codorníu with unparalleled views of the modernist winery, which was constructed in 1976 by the architect Puig i Cadafalch.  

Open 365 days.

The Cavas

Bruno Colomer

Winemaker at Codorníu

Responsible for winemaking at Codorníu since 2008, Bruno oversees all phases of production with enthusiasm, from when the grapes are on the vine until the bottles leave the cellars.  His favourite corner is Celler Jaume, Codorníu's oenological innovation, research and experimentation centre. There, between stone walls and surrounded by small stainless steel or cement tanks and oak barrels, Colomer gives free rein to his knowledge, with the constant aim of achieving oenological excellence.

 

The cellars

The imposing Codorníu Cellars in Sant Sadurní d’Anoia opened their doors in the early twentieth century. Since 1976, they have been considered a Historic Artistic Monument, and one of the most striking examples of modernist architecture dedicated to the production and ageing of cavas. 

 

The building, constructed by the modernist architect Puig i Cadafalch, symbolises the fruitful alliance between nature and human labour and is a tribute in stone to the silence of cava. Beneath the earth, in a five-storey labyrinth of underground cellars made of brick, the second fermentation and ageing of Codorníu cavas takes place at a constant temperature.

At the end of the nineteenth century, Manuel Raventós wanted to reflect the art of cava-making in everything that surrounded it.  Therefore, he asked great artists such as Casas, Junyent and Utrillo to design posters to promote the brand to consumers, a forerunner of modern advertising.  Many examples of this graphic art decorate the premises and have featured in special exhibitions both in Spain and abroad.

 

The vineyards

Codorníu cavas are born in vineyards located in the Penedès, in the Conca de Barberà and in Costers del Segre, where we have applied sustainable viticultural techniques for many years. That is to say, we allow nature to take its course and only intervene when necessary.

 

The secret of a good cava lies in using the highest quality grapes and taking stringent care of the vineyards, which is how things are done in Codorníu. Each grape variety is different and requires a specific climate and soil.  That is why the work of the vine-grower starts even before the vines are planted, by choosing the most appropriate terrain for the variety.

Codorníu is the only cava producer to use grapes from vineyards in three very different climatic zones within the D.O. Cava. An exceptional trait, which allows us to plant each variety in the area where it is capable of expressing its full character, and at the same time, gives us an unrivalled opportunity to create different styles and types of cava.

Penedès and Alt Camp

2,000 hectares

Area of vineyard

1,500 micro-parcels at different altitudes, with a predominant Mediterranean climate and dry-land viticulture. 1,400 hectares are 100% organic farming.

Vineyard characteristics:

Calcareous clay, clay-loam 

Soils

200-500 metres

Altitud

Bush and Trellis

Training

Macabeo, Xarel·lo, Parellada and Chardonnay

Varieties

10,000 kg/Ha

Yield

25 years

Average age of vines

The Macabeo variety provides the cava with sweetness and perfume. It produces pale, light wines with notes of white fruit and balanced acidity. Xarel·lo gives body and structure to the cava, creating aromatic, well-balanced and silky wines with good acidity.  And Parellada adds delicacy and finesse to the cava, giving wines with delicate floral aromas and low levels of alcohol.

Conca de Barberà

35 hectares

Area of vineyard

An area with a moderate continental climate ideal for growing Pinot Noir, which provides grapes with a touch of minerality thanks to the slate soils. Codorníu owns the oldest vines of this variety in Spain and is the winery with the greatest experience in its vinification.

Vineyard characteristics:

Calcareous alluvial and clay-loam terraces

Soils

350-700 metres

Altitude

Bush

Training

Pinot noir

Varieties

6,000-8,000 kg/Ha

Yield

35 years

Average age of vine

Pinot Noir requires a cool climate and is difficult to grow, as it is very sensitive to all kinds of issues.  At Codorníu, Pinot Noir is used to make high quality rosé cavas and, since 2008, we have also used it to make white cavas. Highly aromatic, it provides surprising notes of red berry fruit, good acidity and plenty of body and structure; making it ideal for cavas with some ageing. 

It can also be used to make rosé cavas.  In fact, Codorníu first began using this variety to make a high quality cava rosado.  

Costers del Segre

1,000 hectares

Area of vineyard

Costers del Segre is the most continental area of inland Catalonia. Here, the large diurnal temperature range produces grapes that are highly concentrated in aromas and flavours, with the vibrant freshness ideal in the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grape varieties.

Vineyard characteristics:

Clay loam

Soils

250-300 metres

Altitude

Trellis

Training

Chardonnay and Pinot Noir

Varieties

9,000-12,000 kg/Ha

Yield

15 years

Average age of vine

Chardonnay produces aromatic and well-structured cavas, with a good structure, body and density as well as a long finish.  It also allows us to achieve a fine mousse in the cavas.  Young cavas benefit from the freshness of its fruity aromas.  In Reserva cavas, it delivers a broad range of nuances from ageing, as well as retaining the typical fruit character.  It is an early budding variety, putting it at severe risk from frost.

Pinot Noir requires a cool climate and is difficult to grow, as it is very sensitive to all kinds of issues.  At Codorníu, Pinot Noir is used to make high quality rosé cavas and, since 2008, we have also used it to make white cavas. Highly aromatic, it provides surprising notes of red berry fruit, good acidity and plenty of body and structure; making it ideal for making cavas with some ageing.   

It can also be used to make rosé cavas.  In fact, Codorníu first began using this variety to make a high quality cava rosado.

 

Sustainable viticulture


The balance between tradition and modernity is present in all aspects of our work at Codorníu, starting with the land.  The best way of preserving the personality of each parcel is to allow nature to take its course. 

 

Absolute respect for nature is the basis of what is today called sustainable agriculture.  At Codorníu, the vine-growers follow the growing and ripening processes of the vine.  We only intervene when there are imbalances, to correct them and to ensure that we can obtain grapes of the highest quality.  

In order to know what each estate and each plant requires, we use the most advanced systems that allow us to intervene only when strictly necessary. These include precision viticulture, which uses satellites to monitor the vigour of each plant, anti-frost protection and pest control that substitutes chemical products with pheromones, etc. 

The winery never ceases year-after-year in its commitment to the environment, generating and seeking new ways to ensure the best possible future planet for all of us.

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