Cava Food Pairing: What To Eat When Sipping Cava

If you haven’t experienced the wonderful flavor that is Cava, what have you been doing? This Spanish sparkling wine is the perfect accompaniment for any occasion. 

Cava Food Pairing

From girl’s night to celebrate your wedding anniversary, Cava has an air of luxury and sophistication while tasting utterly delicious. 

Now, you may be wondering what foods to serve while sipping on a refreshing glass of Cava. And you have come to the right place. 

Below we discuss all of the yummy food pairings that go perfectly with the flavors of Cava. From salmon and asparagus to fruits and cheeses, you can create the perfect dish that makes you feel complete. 

Let’s dive in!

What Is Cava?

Cava is an extremely popular and delicious Spanish sparkling wine. It is made using a thousand year old process called Méthode traditionnelle. 

Méthode traditionnelle is a two-step fermentation process. What makes this so unique is that the second step takes place in the bottle rather than the barrel. This is where it is turned into sparkling wine and develops those wonderful bubbles. 

This is also called the Champagne Method as they both follow the same fermentation process. 

Prior to being put on the market, traditional-method cava must mature for nine months on its lees. While rosé varieties of Cava are prepared with the addition of Garnacha or Monastrell, white Cava is made with Macabeo (Viura), Xarel-lo, and Parellada. 

Cava can be made across the entire nation of Spain. But it is mainly created in Catalonia. A fruitful area that is rich for producing wines. 

Flavorful Profile Of Cava 

Now for the important stuff, what does Cava taste like? Cava is most commonly compared to Prosecco but it is much richer in flavor. 

A dry and tangy sparkling wine, Cava. It tastes like peach, yellow apple, almond, pear, and orange, among other distinctive characteristics. It is fresh and crisp with a light body. Perfect for recharging after a long day in the office. 

There are various styles of Cava:

  • Cava: This is one of the most common types of Cava and ages for a minimum of 9 months. 
  • Cava Reserva: This ages for a minimum of 15 months. 
  • Gran Reserva: This must be aged for at least 30 months and is often sold as a vintage wine. 
  • Cava Paraje Calificado: This Cava must also be aged for at least 30 months but must come from vines that are older than 10 years. 
  • Cava Rose: This is a growing type of Cava that is sweet with notes of orange peel, berries, and red cherry. 

Best Food Pairings With Cava 

Due to the light fruity notes, Cava is an extremely versatile beverage that can be paired with a variety of dishes. However, there are some that go better than others. 

Traditionally, Cava is served with a Spanish dish, Tapas. They are small dishes that can be shared and enjoyed in groups or on your own. 


When serving any form of seafood, your first thought may be to serve a glass of white wine. And while this is great, not everyone loves the intensity of a Chardonnay. 

Cava is an excellent accompaniment for shellfish as it is light and allows the flavors of the seafood to really shine. 

You want to ensure the Cava is chilled before serving as a warmer Cava can appear dryer on the palate. This can completely alter the flavor and possibly even ruin the dish. 


Now, sometimes simple is best. And nothing is more simple than a bowl of fruit with a glass of bubbly Cava. 

Berry, Kiwi, stone fruit (nectarine, peach, and apricot), and citrus fruits (orange and grapefruit) are the greatest fruit combinations for Cava.

The key to making sure that both the fruit and the Cava are giving the most transcendent flavor is to select a slightly sweet Cava. Cava Seco is a much sweeter type of Cava that will pair perfectly with the natural sweetness of the fruit. 

If you are wanting to make things extra fun for a girls night or Sunday brunch, allow your fruit to soak in the Cava for a few hours. Serve as a snack or as a fresh dessert and have everyone fall in love. 


Paella is a pillar of Spanish cuisine. Perfectly flavored rice with a mix of veggies, chorizo, and seafood. Your mouth will be watering as soon as you begin cooking. 

While this dish is filled with so many strong flavors, it is still a light dish that goes perfectly with Cava. 

It is now becoming more common to have a chicken Paella that is still fresh and light without the shellfish. This still works wonderfully with Cava as the dryness of the sparkling wine cuts through the sweetness of the dish. 

Finish off your dish with a splash of fresh lime juice for a luxurious yet comforting meal that everyone can enjoy. 


While it may be sparkling, Cava is still a wine. Meaning one of the best pairings is cheese! 

Cava is a delicate wine, so it’s vital to keep that in mind when serving it with cheese. Cheeses that are too strong will dominate the wine’s aromas.

You want to select more mild flavored cheeses such as Manchego, Cheddar, and Asiago that allow the flavors of the sparkling wine to pop through. 

Add some deli meats such as salami, prosciutto, and chorizo for the perfect charcuterie board. Finish with a dash of chutney or relish, fresh grapes, and crackers. Perfect!

Fried Chicken 

If there is one thing that you would not expect to go beautifully with sparkling wine, it would be Fried Chicken (Also check out Chicken Cacciatore Wine Pairing). Yet they go together seamlessly. 

The bubbles in Cava are part of what makes it so great and this goes perfectly with the crunch of Fried Chicken. 

You can also serve Cava with grilled or roast chicken and get a wonderful burst of flavor. But something about the greasy, crispy, comforting profile of Fried Chicken just takes things to another level. 

Cava goes nicely with mildly spicy chicken meals like Korean fried chicken or dishes of a similar nature because of its fragrant flavor. 

You may want to select a slight dryer Cava to combat the sweetness of the Fried Chicken. Add a side of mashed potatoes and you have a delish comforting dish with a luxurious touch. 

Creamy Pasta 

A popular component of creamy pasta dishes is white wine. So, it only makes sense that Cava be an excellent pairing. 

The way to make this be magical is to use Cava within the sauce. Just a splash to deglaze the pan or half a cup in order to really introduce the flavors to the dish. Either way, it is going to be the perfect weeknight meal. 

You want to select a richer, more mature Cava in order to cut through the richness of the sauce. It also works great for other creamy dishes such as Fish Pie or Risotto. 

Fresh Salad

During the warmer months, Cava pairs great with fresh, vibrant salads. You want to ensure you have a bright, zesty dressing when sipping on a glass of Cava to make sure those flavors really play off each other. 

Many people enjoy adding some fruits to their salads for some natural sweetness. We recommend strawberries, apricots, and apples for that luscious flavor. 

Use fresh ingredients that are bursting with flavor to give everything some life. Top with your lemon vinaigrette and enjoy. 

Katsu Curry

Katsu Curry is another unexpected food pairing but it is truly wonderful. Katsu Curry is a dish with fried chicken served with a carrot and potato curry sauce. 

It is a mild-tasting dish that allows for other flavors to pop through. Perfect for enjoying with a glass of bubbling Cava. 

You can add a splash, and we mean just a splash, of your Cava to your Katsu Curry but make sure to let all of the alcohol burn off. We don’t want the flavor to be too strong. 

The chicken is coated in seasonal panko breadcrumbs. This is an entirely different flavor than your traditional buttermilk fried chicken. Yet it works just as well. 

White Chocolate 

No meal is complete without something sweet to finish things off. And White Chocolate is the perfect sweet treat. 

When sipping on a sweet Cava Seco or Cava Rose, opt for White Chocolate as it isn’t too rich and will blend perfectly with the sparkling wine. We love a crispy glass of Cava paired with White Chocolate and Raspberry Cheesecake. 

Are Cava And Prosecco The Same?

Cava is most commonly compared to Prosecco. They are both light on the palate, dry, and more affordable than Champagne. But they are not the same thing. 

For starters, Cava is a Spanish sparkling wine while Prosecco is an Italian sparkling wine. Both wines are made from grapes but Cava follows that traditional Méthode traditionnelle derived from the French. 

Cava is also drier than Prosecco and offers a less fruity flavor. 

We like to think of Cava being the balance between the sweetness of Prosecco and the expensive price tag of Champagne.

Final Thoughts 

Cava is the perfect beverage for when you want to enjoy a refreshing wine, with a little something more. The bubbles make it much easier to drink and it goes swimmingly with a range of dishes. 

Above are some of the best food pairings with Cava. From the traditional Shellfish Paella to a more surprising Fried Chicken. Cava can be enjoyed with some of your favorite dishes and add a touch of indulgence. 

So, pop open the bottle in the fridge and get to planning your next dinner party!

Frequently Asked Questions 

Why Is Cava So Cheap In Spain?

The grapes that are grown in the Catalonia and Penedes regions are responsible for the cava wine’s price. Compared to the grapes used to make champagne in France, they are typically much less expensive to cultivate and grow.

Does Cava Have Less Acidity Than Prosecco?

Due to having less sweetness than Prosecco, Cava typically has higher acidity levels. It is less acidic than Champagne with a more citrus and fruity flavor. 

What Do You Serve Cava In?

Cava is typically served in Flute Glasses. This brings out the acidity and freshness of the wine and helps keep the bubbles for longer. 

Sarah Perez
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