So­bels to re­tire amid the vines

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - REALESTATE -

Kevin So­bels, the leg­endary Aus­tralian wine­maker, and wife, Mar­garet are sell­ing their Hunter Val­ley win­ery, as they look to­wards re­tir­ing. They hope to be stay­ing around Pokol­bin.

So­bels (be­low) is a fifth gen­er­a­tion de­scen­dant of Ger­man im­mi­grant wine­maker, Carl Au­gust So­bels.

The fam­ily name has been con­nected to Aus­tralian wine­mak­ing since the 1840s, be­gin­ning in South Aus­tralia’s Barossa and Clare Val­ley.

Kevin So­bels ar­rived in the Hunter in 1972 from the Barossa.

The cur­rent 22ha Halls Road, Pokol­bin of­fer­ing, Kevin So­bels Wines, was started in the early 1990s by Kevin and Mar­garet on acreage of­fered to them by the Ross Jones fam­ily.

They formed a com­pany with the help of a few friends with their sales door open­ing in 1994.

By 1996 the wine­mak­ing fa­cil­ity was com­plete so that wines could be made and bottled on-site.

The long es­tab­lished brand has around 5ha of planted vines.

Its Jurds mar­ket­ing agent Cain Beck­ett says the prop­erty would suit the es­tab­lish­ment of a five-star coun­try lodge with restau­rant and func­tion space.

So­bels was in­stalled as the 2014 Hunter Val­ley Liv­ing Leg­end of Wine, join­ing other Hunter no­ta­bles as Brian and Fay McGuigan, Bruce Tyrrell and Don McWil­liam.

The So­bels’ wine jour­ney be­gan with Carl Au­gust, who in 1847 quit his home in the Sax­ony-An­halt town of Quedlin­burg and m mi­grated with his fam­ily to Au Aus­tralia. He had been t trained in wine­mak­ing in Ger­many and in France’s Cham­pagne re­gion.

He made his first A Aus­tralian wines for W Wil­liam Ja­cob, the gov gov­ern­ment sur­veyor who mapped the Barossa. This year will mark the 170th un­bro­ken run of Aus­tralian vin­tages by So­bels, with their son, Ja­son con­tin­u­ing the tra­di­tional fam­ily craft.

The prop­erty at Pokol­bin.

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