In a region of spectacular views, Carrick has one of the finest, over the Bannockburn Inlet to Mt Difficulty and the Pisa Range. In the unashamedly modern restaurant a large Karl Maughan painting of lush gardens contrasts with the starker scenery outside. It’s slightly surreal walking over glass panels in the floor and looking at the barrel cellar below.
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The wines are exemplary, precise and harmonious. There’s a minerally sauvignon blanc, dry, off-dry and sweet rieslings, a rich pinot gris, a fresh, nutty chardonnay, the richer EBM (extended barrel maturation) chardonnay, and several pinot noirs – the easy drinking Unravelled, the one-off Crown & Cross, and the Estate Pinot Noir. In special years they also make an Excelsior Pinot Noir named for the old coal mine beneath the vineyard. Steve Green and Barbara Robertson-Green planted the vineyard in the early 1990s, one of the first on the Cairnmuir side of Bannockburn.
The chardonnays are excellent examples of the wellstructured, linear styles Central does so well. Also try the sweet, low-alcohol (9 per cent) Josephine riesling, and don’t pass on the pinot noir.
Carrick Winery Restaurant
Enjoy lunch alfresco in summer or inside by the fire in winter. Chef Gwen Harvie uses fresh seasonal produce, much from Carrick’s vege garden. Her food is simple but sophisticated, and a matching wine is recommended for each dish.
Hours: As for cellar door (closed for short period in winter; bookings recommended)