A cozy wine tasting experience with Kolar family in Baranja village Suza
Who can present any sort of service or product,
better than people who put love, knowledge, time and soul itself in a thing they do for a living?
I witnessed it myself several years ago when I started to collect experiences and things to do and offer in Croatia. It was a beautiful autumn Saturday when I was off to Baranja with my brother and a plan to visit a few places and stubborn to find homemade Merlot or even go for a wine tasting experience. Back then, I didn’t know much about wine, wine regions, wine tastings. Actually, I knew nothing, except that I like Merlot. Thankfully I was ignorant. Why thankfully? Because that ignorance led me towards the first meeting with the Kolar family.
The name of Baranja means Mother of wine, it got its name from two Hungarian words: -bor meaning wine and –anya meaning mother.
So, it was a nice November day, I enjoyed spending some time with my brother, visiting places I wanted to see and hoping to find wine cellar that will be open and will have Merlot to sell. We were wondering a bit around trying to find places Google suggested and just when I was thinking it would be better to call off the search and find some restaurant for lunch my eyes caught the sign: KOLAR WINE SELLING in the village of Suza. And I decided to give a try there. My brother and I entered the wine cellar and the first person we met was Mario owner’s son-in-law and soon after appeared alfa and omega of the Kolar family, Mr Kolar himself. O gosh, how embarrassed I feel when I remember how stupid must have I sounded by saying how I am looking to buy Merlot and only Merlot as it is the only wine I like. I also added how much I don’t like white wine!!
And that was the end of it. THE END of my blind love for Merlot as Mr Kolar introduced me to other ones. But, wait, wait, wait! I am rushing things. When I said clear and loud that I don’t like white wine, Mr Kolar stayed calm, smiled the way wise people smile, waved with his finger to follow him and led us to the cellar.
The moment I stepped into their wine cellar, was the moment when the doors of the world of wine opened to me. I would like to be clear about something. To me, the story of wine is not about alcohol and getting drunk, it never was and it never became to be. Meeting Mr Kolar and tasting his wines while he was explaining each one of them made me change my point of view toward wine.
I was fascinated by the story of Kolar wine and the way Mr Kolar was talking about the growing vine, their wine, sorts they produce… There is that magic going around when you hear someone talking with so much love and pride. Slowly but firmly I forgot all about not liking white wine along the way of tasting Grasevina, Chardonnay, Green Silvanac… and Rose and red wine Frankovka and at the end, we came to White and Grey Pinot, or as Mr Kolar calls White Pinot a child and Grey Pinot a father. And, then it was when I hopelessly fell in love with a father, erm Grey Pinot and said: I have found a man of my life!
I am in love with Grey Pinot and the Kolar family ever since.
With time, I met Mr Kolar’s dear, dear ladies: wife Ilona and daughters Sibila and Kinga who are a significant and equally important part of the family wine business.
I greatly recommend a visit as they are very warm and friendly family. Beside quality wine, they also offer homemade local food, traditional Baranja dishes and private accommodation if you decide to stay and spend some time and truly relax in the tranquillity of Baranja region.
P.S. Kolar family is receiving awards for their wine since 1997. The fanciest one is a silver medal from The Decanter World Wine Awards 2017 in London