Monday, February 21, 2011

2/21 Michael Horn and Allan Scott, Barbara Drady

Michael Horn Talks With Allan Scott About His 2010 Sauvignon Blanc and 2008 Pinot Noir

Allan Scott is a name synonymous with wine in Marlborough. As one of the first independent wineries to establish themselves here back in 1990, Allan Scott Winery has made a name for itself in this highly competitive industry.

Allan has 37 years in the wine business, which makes him one of the most experienced people in Marlborough when it comes to growing, making and marketing wine. When Allan and his wife Catherine decided to settle here in 1973, (Cathy is a fifth generation Marlburian) Allan took a job with Montana working in their new vineyards. In 1980 he was head-hunted by Corbans to oversee the establishment of their Marlborough vineyards. He soon became their Senior Viticultural Manager, which not only gave him responsibility for the company's entire national grape intake, but led him to become part of the winemaking team.

All this stood him in good stead for the family’s foray into winemaking. Back then, there weren’t any boutique wineries to speak of in Marlborough. In 1975 Allan and Catherine purchased a block of land and got into contract growing. Then, when the first independent winemakers started to emerge in Marlborough, Allan and Catherine were in a position to become a part of this new era in New Zealand’s wine industry. In 1990, they launched Allan Scott Estate Winery. Allan remembers it well. “We were one of a small number who made up the first wave of the independents.” The Allan Scott Winery has seen some changes since then. Over the 20 years since its inception, the winery has evolved to keep ahead of the changing demands from the market.

Perhaps the biggest change for the business has been its evolution into a true family business. Allan and Cathy’s three children have grown up to become valuable members of the business. Elder daughter Victoria is responsible for Marketing, while their son Josh is Chief winemaker, taking responsibility for the dozen or more different wines the winery produces. Younger daughter Sara has also trained a winemaker, but works mostly in the vineyard following her father’s specialty as a viticulturalist.

Along with the core range of Allan Scott Estate wines, there is the single vineyard selection of prestige wines, which uses the best grapes and careful cellaring to produce a limited volume of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Noir, with names like The Hounds and The Wallops to depict their origin. In 1999 the winery also released a Méthode Traditionelle range, which include a Blanc de Blancs and a sparkling rosé. After the 2007 harvest, a small block of Sauvignon Blanc was converted to organic cultivation allowing the Scott’s to produce their first organically made Sauvignon Blanc in 2008. This is the Allan Scott Millstone Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2008 which is certified BioGro in the process of conversion to organic certification.

A recent addition to the family’s holdings is the acquisition of their Scott Base Vineyard in Central Otago. The family have had a long standing love of the region dating back nearly as far as Allan’s involvement in Marlborough wine. It began with the passion they shared with the pioneering winemakers, exchanging the ideas and challenges of the early days. So it was an easy decision for the family to come to this perfectly located site with an established vineyard that was producing exceptional wine. The six hectare, mainly northern sloping vineyard is predominantly planted in Pinot Noir, with small plots of other varieties.

It's Time For Some Pinot! Barbara Drady is the President & Founder of Affairs of the Vine & She'll Tell Us All About the Upcoming Pinot Noir Summit!

The Pinot Noir Summit, one of the best Pinot Noir events in the world, returns to the Bay Area for its 9th year on February 26, 2011.

Pinot Noir can be mysterious and somewhat intimidating. This event creates fun, excitement, and allows people to trust their own palates.

If you love Pinot Noir or just want to know what all the fuss is about, you must attend this interactive, educational and fun event.

About Barbara Drady

President and founder of Affairs of the Vine, one of the industry's top wine education and communications companies, Barbara Drady has always loved wine. Her many years in the wine industry, combined with "her thirst for knowledge" for wine have resulted in her extensive knowledge of wine, winemaking, and wine growing practices.

Barbara is the creator of the innovative "Wine Boot Camp" concept which has gained wide media attention and industry recognition. She developed, designed and directs the Wine Shootout competitions that allow wine lovers to pit their palate against the Publish Post experts.

Drady has been a featured guest on radio talk shows demystifying wine and has been a visiting educator at University of California, Davis, the California Culinary Academy, New England Culinary Institute, and other culinary schools throughout the United States. Barbara has been recognized by Wine Business Monthly and Bay Area Business Woman as one of the leading women in the wine industry.

For more information on the Pinot Noir Summit, check out their website at!

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