Getting the “Heart of the Desert” GI Status

Wineries across the board work hard, every day, to maintain their Geographical Indication (GI) status, or to gain it. Why is it so special, you ask? Glad you did – it’s like an approval from the government stating that a specific geographical origin possesses unique qualities to the products (in this case, the wines!) and renders a reputation of certain quality. In the wine business, this could be a region or a subregion of a geographical area.

We hear about (well-established) GI’s in European countries such as those in France and Italy. The same occurs in New World countries like Australia and New Zealand but because they’re newer, the wineries work extra hard to obtain this status. Carrick from Bannockburn in New Zealand is no exception. Locally known as the “Heart of the Desert”, Bannockburn experiences the extremes due to the nature of the location. This sub-region of Central Otago is blocked in by the mighty Kawarau River and the snow-capped Carrick mountain ranges. The conditions are harsh (think extreme hot, cold, dry and windy), which makes winemaking here perfect and fascinating.

The output from this area has been consistently of high quality and unique that it would be a sin not to gain legal protection on the area. Rosie Menzies, the head wine-maker at Carrick, has been in the forefront of this plight to put Bannockburn on the GI map. A project set in motion five years ago, Rosie’s tenacity and hard work have finally paid off as Carrick got their approval to become its own protected winemaking sub-region on 1st February this year!

Congratulations to the team for securing the GI status! This just means one thing – Carrick’s quality is true (we’re not the only ones touting their horn). If you’re in the mood for some satisfying, impressive and above all, unique, Bannockburn wines, don’t miss out on Carrick!

Click here for a peek in their collection.


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