Carrick | Central Otago, New Zealand

Carrick Winery Bannockburn Central Otago New Zealand

It’s 20 years now since Steve and Barbara Green established the first of Carrick’s vineyard plantings on the Cairnmuir terraces at Bannockburn in Central Otago, extending the estate four years later. What was at the time a tangle of wild thyme and briar roses has become one of the region’s most successful wine producers.

It is the Pinot Noir grape which is the trump card here – richly coloured, immensely aromatic and full of cherry and plum fruit - but don’t underestimate Carrick’s characterful and crisp Riesling and Chardonnay, both of which have enviable fruit purity.

Francis Hutt wisely spent a year in the vineyards with viticulturist Blair Deaker before taking over as Carrick’s winemaker in 2011. A devotee of organic and biodynamic wines, he took particular pride in taking charge of Carrick’s first organic bottlings in 2012.

Meanwhile, Steve Green somehow combines the roles of owner, general manager, assistant winemaker, marketer and overseas traveller with a position on the board of Wine New Zealand and past presidencies of Central Otago Pinot Noir Ltd and the Central Otago Winegrowers Association. Despite all of this, he still likes nothing better than a little downtime in the back country with a bottle of Carrick Pinot at his elbow.