Bannock Brae ‘Marlene’s’ Gruner Veltliner 2016

The Bannock Brae label of Crawford and Catherine Brown is best known as a source of gold medal winning Central Otago Pinot Noir. Their vineyard on Cairnmuir Road in Bannockburn was planted in 1998 under the advice of Robin Dicey, and Robin’s son James tends the viticulture today. The Browns have as their contracted winemakers Sarah-Kate Dineen and Jen Parr. As a point of difference, the Browns planted Gruner Veltliner in 2008, partly inspired by them hosting an Austrian AFS student, whose name was Marlene. There are 1,000 vines close-planted on 0.4 ha, on a steep, north-facing slope on gravelly sandy loess soil. Crawford reports the need for a different approach to the viticulture, as the bunches are very large, with large, thick-skinned berries. The Browns employ cane pruning and thin to one bunch per shoot. The vines yielded 3.5 tonne in 2016. Due to its uniqueness, the wine has developed a strong following. Here, I review the new 2016 release.


  • Bannock Brae ‘Marlene’s’ Central Otago Gruner Veltliner 2016

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