It all began way back in 1820s when the first Casellas began crafting wine in Italy. Over a century later, in 1951, Filippo Casella and his wife Maria decided to leave their homeland to pursue their hopes and dreams of a better life in Australia. Recognizing the potential of his new surroundings, Filippo purchased a farm in the small town of Yenda, New South Wales, and did what came naturally. He began selling grapes to local wineries, and by 1969 decided it was time to put his own winemaking skills to use and the Casella winery was born.
Filippo's son, John, entered the family business in 1994 and embarked on an ambitious expansion to build a new winery with a vision of blending old world heritage with new world technology. Today, Casella Wines, including Yellow Tail, is run by Filippo's three sons - John, Managing Director and Winemaker; Joe, Australian Sales Director; and Marcello, Director and Vineyard Manager. Filippo's grandchildren - Phillip and Rachelle - are the sixth generation to join the business.
Learn More About Syrah/Shiraz
(seh-RAH/shee-RAHZ) It's a Smokin' Grape Syrah and Shiraz - same grape, different name. It's a popular and adept variety, growing in multiple regions and creating many different styles of wine.
The home base of Syrah is the Northern Rhone, where it creates the exclusive wines of Hermitage and Cote Rotie. On the less pricy side, the Rhone makes Syrah-based wines in Crozes-Hermitage, Cornas and St. Joseph. Syrah made a big splash in Australia, where it's called Shiraz and reigns as the most planted grape of the country. Washington State, Southern and Central California, South Africa and South America are also making wines from Syrah that have substance and style.
Notable Facts Like many world-popular grapes, Syrah can differ in style depending on the climate, region and winemaking techniques. Typical aromas and flavors from most Syrah-based wines include pepper, blackberry and leather or smoke. Australian Shiraz and Central or Southern California Syrah tend to be more dense in fruit flavors, some even jammy - warmer climates lead to riper fruit flavors. Northern Rhone style typically shows more pepper and leather notes, with less upfront fruit. Washington State, South Africa and South America differ in style but usually show the range of Syrah flavors.
Summing it up Successful Sites: Rhone, Australia, California, Washington State, South Africa
Common Descriptors: pepper, blackberry, blueberry, jam, meat, smoke
Learn More About Australia
With a landmass the size of the US, Australia has just as many appellations. Many wines are simply labeled from their state of origin. Some of these are the most popular:
New South Wales
- home to Sydney and other tourist destinations, New South Wales has a smaller focused wine growing region, but many wines are a blend of these smaller appellations and so are deemed New South Wales appellation.
– a small corner of Australia winemaking occurs on the opposite coast of the others. The largest state, Western Australia includes the smaller appellation of Margaret River.
– This appellation encompasses the states of South Australia, New South Wales and Victoria. Grapes are often trucked in from at least 2 of these states for crushing and bottling, giving the wine a more general appellation of origin. This is the broadest appellation in the country.