Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir Double Gold in Sydney International Wine Competition
Lowburn Ferry - fine Pinot Noir wine from Central Otago


"great wine
is made in the vineyard"

Available now:

Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2008 NZ$40.95 per bottle

Top 100, Blue Gold medal, Sydney Int. Wine Competition 2010
Silver medal, Air New Zealand Wine Awards 2009
4 stars Cuisine Nov 2009
4 stars Winestate Nov-Dec 2009

Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2007 NZ$40.95 per bottle

Gold Medal, NZ International Wine Show 2008,
Silver medal International Wine Challenge - London (IWC) 2009
Silver Medal, Air NZ Wine Awards 2008
93 points (5 stars) Gourmet Traveller Wine Feb/March 2009 94 points, Penguin Guide 2010

Lowburn Ferry Pinot Rosé 2009 NZ $22.95 per bottle

Michael Cooper's Buyer's Guide to New Zealand Wines 2010: 4 stars

“Delicious from the start, the 2009 vintage is a vibrantly fruity, crisp, dry style (3 grams/litre of residual sugar), birght pink, with mouthfilling body (14% alcolohol) and fresh, strong berry and spice flavours, showing excellent delicacy and immediacy”

Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 3 vintages 6-pack special

  • 2 bottles Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2006
    (Gold medal, Air NZ Wine Awards 2008)

  • 2 bottles Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2007
    (Gold medal, NZ International Wine Show 2008, 5 stars Bob Campbell BobsWineReviews.com)

  • 2 bottles Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2008
    4 stars Cuisine Nov09, 4 stars Winestate Nov/Dec 09

The Lowburn Ferry, prior to 1938
when the Lowburn Bridge was built

Looking towards Pisa Range taken
during wind machine maintenance in spring 2009

Lowburn Ferry Double Gold in Sydney International Wine Competition

Hi there from Lowburn Ferry! in sunny, (sometimes windy) Central Otago. We've had a lovely spring, despite an early start to the season, and in the vineyard shoot thinning is completed, and wires are in place in readiness for flowering on our pinot noir grape vines.

The release of Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2008 coincides with the fantastic news that this wine has won a coveted Top 100 Award in addition to a Blue-Gold at one of the world's most exceptional wine shows. The Sydney International Wine Competition is unique among international wine shows in that the wines are first judged on wine quality before being judged alongside food. Only wines that score high enough to be awarded a Gold Medal in each judging qualify for the unique Blue-Gold (or double Gold) Medal. The 100 wines which score the highest number of aggregate points in both judgings are then given The Top 100 Wine Award. Trophy winners from the Sydney International Wine Competition 2010 will be announced in February.

The boutique Sydney International Wine Competition's main aim, through its website top100wines.com and e-Newsletters is to offer consumers an objective selection of superior wines of varying palate weights, enjoyable immediately, to complement appropriate food. To do this, its international panel of judges select the top twenty percent of a capped 2,000 international entries and arrange them according to palate weight. This permits the Judges to further assess these finalists in a second phase judging, against wines of similar palate weight but more importantly alongside a dish with flavours that these wines are likely to complement. This final test, with appropriate food complexing the judges' palates, is probably unique, amongst the major international wine shows of the world.

Owners Jean and Roger Gibson say they are thrilled with the results, which consolidate a golden run for the main label wines produced from this vineyard. (The very first wine, Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir 2003 won Champion Wine of the Show at the NZ Winegrowers Bragato Wine Awards in 2005).

Here at Lowburn Ferry we are a family owned vineyard dedicated to the production of high quality Pinot Noir wine. The vineyard was established in 2000, nestled on a sheltered north facing terrace in the Lowburn Valley beneath the Pisa Range in Central Otago. "The vineyard is unusual for Central Otago," says co-owner Roger (a soil scientist in his past life and now also teaches viticulture at the Otago Polytechnic), "in that long term management of the property over more than 100 years has allowed organic matter to build up in the soils, complementing the natural supply of nutrients derived from schist parent material. The resulting healthy soils have excellent biological activity which enhances the terroir of the site."

Sydney International Wine Competition 2010: Top 100, Blue-Gold Award
( click here for more information )

From the Vineyard:
So far we've survived the frost season unscathed - and we are expecting to take a small harvest off new block of Abel pinot noir vines that we planted in 2007, to blend with the other grapes in our main block (a mix of clones 667, 777, 115 and 5).

Skink Sanctuary:

Lowburn Ferry wines are proud sponsors of the CENTRAL OTAGO ECOLOGICAL TRUST which has established a the MOKOMOKO DRYLAND SANCTUARY in the Aldinga Conservation Area behind Alexandra.
The spectacular Otago skink occurs nowhere else in the world except Otago.
They are New Zealand's largest skink (up to 30 cm long) and are black with gold markings – a real Central Otago icon! There is an urgent problem.
Otago skinks have disappeared from more than 90% of their range and are now confined to two disjunct, relict populations. They used to exist in Alexandra only 30 years ago!
In late November 2009 the first 12 giant Otago skinks were released into the Aldinga Conservation Area near Alexandra. This was the first re-introduction of Otago skinks to Central Otago since their local extinction in the 1970s. Read more about this project here...

Frost Watch to Iceberg Watch:

Speaking of frost, the icebergs in the Southern Ocean are luring Roger away from frost fighting (please may we have seen the last of frost for spring). Roger left last weekend aboard the sailing vessel Evohe, as they sail to the Auckland Islands in the NZ Subantarctic to deliver the DOC sealion research team. He's crewing for a 10-14 day stint, and as that's where the recent icebergs have been seen...last heard of in Bluff and heading south..."arrived 3am had a very wobbly trip..." says his latest text!

Things closer to home, in the Lowburn Valley we recently marked the anniversary of 10 years since the big 1999 flood which swamped our property... that was a 100-year flood - whilst the vineyard is on a higher terrace it has been a lesson in the development of soil profiles through natural events - our garden now flourishes where 10 years ago it was under up to 30cm of silt in the aftermath of the flood.

Ferry Rider:
Last summer we had the pleasure to meet an old local, Ian Duncan, who vividly remembers crossing the Clutha River on the old Lowburn Ferry, back in 1936 or 37. His father drove the family onto the punt in their Ford Coupe (he was 5 or 6 years old at the time): "It was quite spectacular, peering out as they pulled us across the river was quite outstanding," says Ian, who has special connection with our label and is now a Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir fan!

In the early settlement days of Central Otago, Lowburn was a prominent ferry landing for travellers moving between the goldmining reefs of Bendigo, and the township of Cromwell. A stone hotel was built at Lowburn Ferry in 1869, and about 1873 a ferry or punt began operating, and the crossing, with its tree-lined approaches and picturesque setting, became not only an important link between Cromwell and the lakes at Wanaka and Queenstown, but also a popular tourist excursion.

The Rachel Hirabayishi painting featured on our wine label represents the bare glacial terraces in the Lowburn Valley known as the "Sugarloaf"; the man on the punt represents the Lowburn Ferry that used to ply across the Clutha River from the gold rush days until 1938 when a bridge was built. |

The original site of the ferry landing was flooded when the Clutha Dam was opened and the Clutha River became Lake Dunstan.

Our property features stone buildings dating back to the early gold miners. We have been careful to preserve the history and character of this unique property in our family home and in the production and branding of our special wine.


"The 2008 Pinot Noir has a good intensity on the nose: mulberry, raspberry and a touch of wild hedgerow. Soft on the entry, nicely balanced with good clarity and finer tannins with notes of mulberry, raspberry and wild strawberry and quite silky towards the finish. This is more feminine than the earlier vintages, no doubt because of the progressing vine age first planted in 2000." 88-90 points Neal Martin – E-Robert Parker - Sept 09

" Low cropping in an otherwise large vintage has maintained the red cherry purity and balance in this Central Otago wine. The bouquet explodes with lifted violets and rose petals, leading into a red fruit palate with structured fruit tannins, vibrant acidity and supportive oak." 93 points WBM100 (Australia) - Tyson Stelzer Oct 09

for more reviews, see our web site

The past year has been a trying time, but now at Lowburn Ferry Wines we are looking forward to working with our trade partners as we consolidate and build our brand in markets in the USA, Australia, Hong Kong, China and within New Zealand. Our web site has more information on our NZ distribution - click here, or for our International Distribution - click here

all the best for a happy Festive Season!
from Jean & Roger

for more information about Lowburn Ferry Pinot Noir wines, go to www.lowburnferry.co.nz/ourwine.html

to download tasting notes on Lowburn Ferry wines, or our point of sale brochure, go to www.lowburnferry.co.nz/downloads.html

You can contact us by phone 0800 682469 (within New Zealand), or international +64-3-4450846 , or fax +64-3-4450840, or Email: finewine@lowburnferry.co.nz

Lowburn Ferry Vineyard, Jean & Roger Gibson, Strathburn Farm, 5 Swann Road, RD2, Cromwell 9384, New Zealand
Phone: +64 (3) 445 0846, Fax +64 (3) 445 0840, Email: finewine@lowburnferry.co.nz