Grape Expectations: Meet fruit scout Michael Kauzlaric

Posted Jan 5th, 2017 in Eating Niagara, Food Stories

Grape Expectations: Meet fruit scout Michael Kauzlaric

Fruit scout Michael Kauzlaric searchs the world for the next big thing in fruit and vegetables to grow and sell in Canada. He talks about his quest on Grub.


An apple a day keeps the doctor away. It also keeps fruit scout Michael Kauzlaric at work.

Kauzlaric travels the world on behalf of the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, looking for the next big thing in fruit for farmers to grow and for everyone to eat. In the latest episode of Grub, he dishes on finding great fruit and determining whether we should make room for it in Canadian orchards and grocery stores. He’s got his eye on new (to these parts) varieties of apples, pears and table grapes. Vineland is a testing site for six new varieties of green and blue table grapes to grow locally. I sampled three when I interviewed Kauzlaric last fall. I’d invite them into my kitchen — and belly — anytime.

They were lively with flavour unlike those woody orbs from faraway places. I also sampled different varieties of Pink Lady apples that Kauzlaric is growing at Vineland. My fingers are crossed one of them proves itself perfect for Ontario's growing seasons. I love me a Pink Lady. I’d love her even more if she were from around here.

Another Cut from Grub

The previous episode of Grub is about terroir in beef, in case you missed it. Niagara chef Michael Olson and Marty Carpenter from the Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence discuss the sense of place in steak. It’s an unexpected subject for a vegetarian me, but the influence of the natural elements on flavour fascinates me. I need to do an episode on terroir in tofu some day, if only because I’m a huge fan of alliteration. Happy listening!


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