We are guardians of our land and look to continuous improvement of our soils and site, through organic management, developing biodiversity and looking after the people who look after our site. Wine is our expression of our place, we therefore pursue a path where this can be best reflected.
From the beginning..
Carrick was founded by Barbara and Steve Green who planted a rabbit infested block of land in Bannockburn, on the shores of the yet to be filled Lake Dunstan in 1994. The Greens' knowledge was academic, but they loved pinot noir and were inspired by the pioneers Alan Brady and Rolf Mills in the early 1990s. The name 'Carrick' is derived from the gold-mining town and the mountain range to which the estate points.
Located in the world’s southernmost winegrowing region, Central Otago is home to a number of sub-regions. We are located in Bannockburn, a small vineyard area, stretching along the southern side of the Kawarau river. In earlier days it was a centre of gold mining operations and the rich pioneering heritage is still evident today.
WE are guardians of our land and look to continuous improvement of our soils and site, through organic management, developing biodiversity and looking after the people who look after our site. Wine is our expression of our place, we therefore pursue a path where this can be best reflected. We have been organic since 2008 because we believe that what goes on our soils affects the water we are surrounded by, which affects our community.
Our logo the Carrick Bend is a knot that for us symbolises this union between the land and our people.
WHEN Carrick was planted in 1994, the land was home to a few merinos, rabbits, thyme and lichens. Today our 24ha of vines are certified Organic through Biogro and our company is certified Sustainable by SWNZ. Biodynamic practices have been employed since 2008.
The nutrition of our vines is supplemented by our own organic composts, and careful use of natural products such as seaweed. Pruning, leaf plucking, shoot and bunch thinning, are all carried out manually, by a small team of dedicated employees. Grapes are harvested by hand, allowing any unripe or inferior fruit to be left behind.
Endeavouring to create biodiversity and sustainability on our site we have a native plant nursery, use only wild yeast, grow herbs and vegetables for our restaurant, plant vineyard cover crops, compost organic materials, and recycle packaging and waste.
CARRICK’s winery and restaurant was completed in 2002 and features an underground cellar, home to about 500 barrels. The winery contains an assortment of stainless steel red and white fermenters, sized to accommodate the various vineyard parcels.
We place importance on having our own winery, sitting alongside our vineyards. The close proximity allows us to make harvesting decisions based on what is best for the wine and allows us to process our grapes in the best possible way, gently and, of course, organically.
We feel that the grapes guide the wines, this philosophy is a continuous journey, to allow the wines to express place and season. There is no formula, no set winemaking style, the individuality of the wines is our reward.
The Cellardoor & Restaurant..
THE setting for our Restaurant and Cellardoor is spectacular - overlooking the Bannockburn Inlet, with the Carrick Range in the background, vineyards to the side and a peek at the barrel room below through glass panels in the floor.
The idea of providing an opportunity for people to eat good food with our wine appealed and we are open almost every day for lunch and tastings.
Gwen Harvie, our dynamic and talented, head chef, is committed to providing seasonal dishes that incorporate homemade, home grown, locally sourced produce and game. Coupled with the insights and attention from the front-of-house team, the restaurant and cellardoor reflect Central Otago regional cuisine at its best.
PINOT NOIR makes up a little over 60% of our production, with the balance shared more or less equally amongst the whites - Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc. As well as a tiny parcel of Pinot Blanc. We make four Pinots – Bannockburn, Unravelled, The Magnetic and, in exceptional vintages, our finest expression of Pinot Noir – Excelsior - so named for the old coal mine which lies beneath the vineyard.
We also make natural wines – Pot de Fleur, Billet Doux and The Death of Von Tempsky.
The Carrick Bend, a nautical knot, is the symbol that embodies the Carrick philosophy of grape growing and wine making. The tying of the knot signifies the bringing together of our viticulture, our winemaking and “our place” which includes Carrick vineyards with the historic and geographic icons of the neighbourhood - the Carrick mountain range, the Carrick Riding and the Carrick Goldfields.