Friday, June 20, 2014

Report from ... Kacaba Syrah Vertical - June 20, 2014

This is part of the "Vertical" series we at the Wine Writers' Circle of Canada are conducting ... today we welcome Michael Kacaba (owner) and John Tummon (winemaker) of Kacaba and taste 14 Syrahs from 12 vintages.

Michael Kacaba, owner, on hand to relate the story of his winery
John Tummon, winemaker since 2005, explains his wine making method for Syrah

The Kacaba Story ...

Michael Kacaba bought the property in 1996:  "these days I could not afford it", buying a section of an aborted development, Vineland ended up taking another parcel of the property.  Michael was fascinated by Syrah after trips to California.  In 1995 and 1996 he was driving around Niagara and saw plenty of vineyards being planted and thought, "why not".  He started wanting to plant only reds: "If we were going to go down we were going to go down big."  

He planted his Syrah (in 1998) which he bought from a California nursery (rootstock 3309 - clone 877), who was leery to sell to a Canadian ... ended up buying 29 crates and shipping them back to Ontario.  18 of the crated made it to Toronto, 11 ended up in Dallas (finally making there way to Ontario).

Winemakers:  Sue-Ann Staff (2000); Jim Warren (2001); Rob Warren (2002-2003); Beth Mischuk (2004); John Tummon (2005 - present).

The Tasting ...
Wine Writers' Circle Members in attendance (clockwise from right):
Tony Aspler, Konrad Ejbich, Dean Tudor, Tim Appelt, Carolyn Evans-Hammond,
Hrayr Berberoglu - listen to John Tummon (standing) and Michael Kacaba
A look from the other side
A quick look over Ejbich's shoulder 8 wines in

The Wines of Note ...
picture missing in action is the 2007 Proprietor's Reserve - one of the best wines of the tasting.

Impressive for its age - structure is still there
Fruit driven, drink now kinda wine - not what you'd expect from 2009 Syrah
Reserve designated a best vintage - and this is from the older block of vines:
plenty of life left in this one
click for full review

Yet to be released at the winery, so this was a sneak peak:
check out full review here

Big thanks to both John Tummon and Michael Kacaba for an interesting and eye-opening tasting.

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