As intimidating as politics and as scary as taxes, the Wine Cava is an age old custom in Greece that when done well is to be feared and respected.
With this in mind I step into the “establishment” with fear and trembling. I look around and as far as the eye can see are oak barrels with labels depicting style, blend, and age of the various contents within. As if sensing my nervousness the shop keeper asks “May I help you” not in Greek of course, because as my obvious Scotish heritage portrays…I am not Greek. So before I lose my nerve I ask the polite man in horrid butchered Greek “What is the tastiest wine in the store?” To my surprise his expression changes from indifference to one of affection bordering on paternal pride. The man begins to tell me how the specimen in Barrel “A” was hand crafted by him, blended from Cabernet, Merlot and Syrah and aged in oak for two years. I tell him that I will take one and a half litres. As if a ghost, the man disappears, returning shortly with a common plastic bottle. I pay and in a few minutes I am standing outside in the 30 degree heat with my very own plastic bottle of quality wine that didn’t hurt my pocket book….
“Well that wasn’t so bad” mumbling to myself. From that point on the Cava has been a great deal of immense exploratory pleasure. The finest wines and varietals Greece has to offer all within a couple of blocks from my house.