The Gruner Veltliner Story

Our search for Gruner Veltliner started in the early 2000s, around the same time we moved to Biodynamic farming.

In 2002 Jancis Robinson MW visited Lark Hill, and inspired by her research on Gruner Veltliner as an alternative to more traditional (French) white varieties, Jancis suggested it would suit our high-altitude vineyard well.

In 2003 we attended a Biodynamic conference in Beechworth, and met luminaries of the industry such as James Milton & Nicolas Joly. Inspired by everything we saw we dove headfirst into Biodynamic farming and began tasting as many Biodynamic wines as possible - many of which included Austrian Gruner Veltliners.

In 2004 we were offered cuttings from a private vine collection in Tasmania; Chris brought 20 cuttings home and from these 20 "mother vines" we planted our Gruner Veltliner vineyard.

By 2009 we had filled out our small planting (1 acre) and the vines were old enough to provide a small but promising crop of Gruner Veltliner fruit. 2009 was our first vintage (and the first in Australia) and received great critical acclaim.

Our 2011 Gruner Veltliner was entered in a world-wide Gruner competition in Austria - where it placed 5th overall, beating out well established Gruners from Austria and Germany to their (and our) surprise. 

Preparing the Gruner Veltliner vineyard for planting

Lark Hill 2009 Gruner Veltliner; At long last, a gruner veltliner to write about. In Austria it is planted in precisely the same regions as riesling, so it was doubly pleasing it should appear in the Canberra District. Is strongly varietal, with a waft of white pepper on the bouquet adding complexity to the fig and ripe pear fruit; best of all is the texture and mouthfeel. 94 Points
— James Halliday - Wine Companion
Lark Hill 2011 Gruner Veltliner; 94 Points.
Bright green-yellow; opens with the white pepper and spice nuances for which the variety is known, but changes gear on the energetic palate with a rainbow of flavours from citrus through to stone fruit, finishing with good acidity.
— James Halliday - Wine Companion