Carrick Winery and Vineyard – new ownership and 2019 releases

27-Apr-2021

Carrick Winery and Vineyard is nestled in the Bannockburn subregion of Central Otago, adjoining 24 ha of BioGro organic certified vineyards (certified since 2008). The winery & cellar door setting overlooking the Bannockburn Inlet is absolutely breathtaking; surrounded by native plants, lush lavender bush and art sculpture displays.

Carrick has a long history in the region, known for its Pinot Noir and EBM Chardonnay. After almost 30 years in the region, Carrick has new owners and an exciting outlook for the future.

The winery was founded in 1994 by Barbara and Steve Green, who planted a rabbit-infested block on the shores of the yet to be filled Lake Dunstan with Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay,  Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc. The winery and restaurant was completed some years later, in 2002, and features an underground cellar, home to about 500 barrels.

In 2016, Auckland businesswoman Elizabeth Zhong bought Carrick, but after a few years of ownership, moved her focus to her other businesses and listed the winery for sale. Francis Hutt, the previous winemaker at Carrick, took on the general manager role following the departure of both Elizabeth Zhong and Steve Green, who moved to Nelson.

Francis hired winemaker Rosie Menzies to assist him in 2018, prior to him leaving for British Columbia, Canada in 2019. Following Francis’s departure, Rosie became chief winemaker. Her first vintage as chief winemaker was 2020, which is one I very much look forward to checking out.

In January this year, Southlanders Tony and Alison Cleland were looking for a new business venture, and as regular Carrick patrons who love Carrick wine, the opportunity to purchase Carrick was an excellent fit. The two spend their lives running a large dairy business in Northern Southland and a specialist farm management investment company, called FarmRight. The business-minded owners are already making some exciting changes and have hired a sales & marketing manager, Catherine Douglas, to help out winemaker Rosie Menzies and vineyard manager Cliff Wickman.

Here, I review a number of Carrick wines: the 2019 Dry Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Unravelled Pinot Noir and 2018 Pinot Noir. All the aromatics are made in similar winemaking techniques to build up texture and complexity. The Pinot Noirs are showing Bannockburn's signature tannin structure.

https://www.carrick.co.nz/


FEATURED WINES IN THIS REVIEW

  • Carrick Organic Dry Riesling 2019, Central Otago
  • Carrick Organic Sauvignon Blanc 2019, Central Otago
  • Carrick Organic Pinot Blanc 2019, Central Otago
  • Carrick Organic Pinot Gris 2019, Central Otago
  • Carrick Unravelled Organic Pinot Noir 2019, Central Otago
  • Carrick Organic Pinot Noir 2018, Central Otago

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