It was the 1960's and young Sydney lawyer Bob Roberts was part of the infamous ‘Bulletin Place’ crowd that was to transform the Australian wine industry. Most prominent of the group was James Halliday and the late Len Evans. The group enjoyed wine from all parts of the world; the ‘wine bug’ had gripped most of them and many soon established vineyards, mostly in the Hunter Valley.
Unlike Len, James and other members of the group though, Bob decided that Mudgee presented a better climate for his favoured wine styles. He adored the classic reds from French regions such as Bordeaux, the Rhone Valley and even Burgundy.
In 1969 he established Huntington Estate and began his egalitarian mission to make some of Australia's best wines at affordable prices. With Len carping in the background, he achieved this goal time over the next four decades and his loyal following grew. His view was great wines, particularly reds, could really only be tested with time in the cellar and his philosophy remains this today in spite of passing fads and a modern trend towards wines that are at their drinking peak while young.
Bob's daughter Susie joined him in 1993 and helped take the wines to a new level.
In 1996 a young journalist called Tim Stevens, who had also caught the ‘wine bug’, purchased Abercorn next door to Huntington Estate. His cellar was full of Huntington Estate old vintages and he wanted to emulate his neighbour's style. Like Bob he was enamoured by Mudgee's unique tannic style. The pair became friends and ten years later when Bob decided to retire it was a natural transition for Tim to take over as owner and winemaker.
Tim has kept true to the Huntington Estate style; “My cellar is full of Huntington Estate and I'd be mad to change the style at all - particularly as I now know all of Bob's secrets!”