Lark Hill Winery, A Cold Vineyard
Lark Hill Winery is a family-owned winery established in 1978 by Sue and Dave Carpenter. The winery lies high on the escarpment above the Bungendore, 30 km northeast of Canberra. The vineyard stays cold at 860m above sea level and is one of the highest plantings in Canberra. The winery released its first vintage in 1981 comprised of Reisling and Chardonnay in limited quantities.
The vineyards were transformed to biodynamic farming in the early 2000s, around the same time the search for Gruner Veltliner was started.
Biodynamic Farming, A Living Organism
In 2000, the Lark hill winery took the first step towards biodynamic farming by using organic principles eliminating artificial, toxic inputs into the farm. Re-establishing and supporting positive microbiology in the soil and the crop itself helped increase crop health. The wines are made without manipulation or chemical adjustment resulting in wines that express the true realization of terroir. The vineyards are self-sufficient and the vines are managed in a way that they will continue to thrive for generations to come. All the wines from Lark hill were certified biodynamic in 2008. Currently, the winery produces Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Gruner Veltliner.
Gruner Veltliner Wines of the Canberra
The winery started including Gruner Veltliner in the vineyard in 2004 inspired by luminaries of the wine industry like James Milton and Nicolas Joly. Lark hill released its first Gruner Veltliner vintage in 2009 that received great critical acclaim. The Gruner Veltliner wine was placed fifth in the Gruner competition in Austria beating out well-known Gruners from Austria and Germany.