Walnut trees line the entrance to Allan Scott Family Winemakers, where a lavender hedge and formal rows of mandarin trees lead to a beautifully aged cellar door and restaurant.
But the wine welcome begins well before, as visitors drive along Marlborough's Jackson Rd, surrounded all the way by vineyards, evidence of the region's lifeblood.
When Allan Scott bought his land in 1985, it was quite a different outlook, and the road was known for its gravel, rather than terroir, with a crusher, shingle pit and unofficial graveyard for dumped cars.
This was beyond the borders of Marlborough's emerging wine industry, the broom stretched metres into the sky and the Scotts' arid farm was more a “rabbit raising ranch” than anything else.
But Allan, who helped plant the region's first vineyard for Montana in 1973 and was Corban's national vineyards manager by 1980, saw potential in the stony, free draining soils and in the more reliable water source.
“I saw all the boxes were ticked,” he says.
He and wife Catherine launched their Allan Scott label in 1990, setting up their young children with a production line of paste and labels for bottles, then selling the wine to family, friends and friends of friends, with vineyard visitors driving up to a garage to buy the odd case.
Two years later, the cellar door emerged on land purchased across the road from the home block, along with a restaurant, based on Catherine's notion that having food on offer would bring people in to try the wine.
She didn't know how right she was, until they found themselves inundated from day one, says marketing manager and eldest daughter Victoria Scott, who recalls her little brother Josh (now the winemaker) tearing over to the vineyard where she - in her last year of school - was tying down vines.
He told his sister to come quickly, as there were people everywhere and her mother was in a panic.
Rather than the awful accident she imagined, the emergency was merely the restaurant's instant success.
“So I had to put a pinny on and take all these meals out,” she says, a baptism of fire.
The Scotts used clay from Kaituna for a rammed earth building, with thick smooth walls and a feel of the Mediterranean.
“We wanted it made from what was here - it was either river stones or clay and mud,” says Allan.
Two decades on, the building is timeless, its charm mirrored inside, where exposed wooden beams, wrought iron features and earthy terracotta tiles are complemented by simple decor.
“Mum is the interior designer, she has an eye for details and we always go with the philosophy that less is more,” says Victoria.
She says she and her siblings have been inspired and instructed by the modest beginnings, determination and passion that enabled their parents to establish the wine company.
And they have all gravitated back to the family business, each finding their own role.
Now the next generation, including her 9- and 10-year-old children, are learning the ropes early.
“We are determined to preserve, strengthen and grow the vision our parents had for the Allan Scott brand,” she says.
Allan Scott Family Winemakers is giving a lucky reader the chance to share an iconic Marlborough experience.
Victoria Scott says the seafood chowder served at Twelve Trees restaurant has been on the menu from the day it opened 20 years ago, and people all over the world talk about it.
The winner of this week's draw wins chowder for two and a bottle of the company's premium Moorlands Sauvignon Blanc.
If you're over 18 years old and want to go in the draw to win this lovely lunch, clip this item from The Marlborough Express on September 7 and send it to Allan Scott competition, c/- PO Box 242, Blenheim 7240 by 5pm Thursday, September 13.
Remember to write your name, address and daytime phone number on the back of the envelope.
- The Marlborough Express