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Somerled is all about the Moody family, and the wine they drink is all about patriarch, Rob. Rob was employed by Penfolds Father of Grange, Max Schubert, in 1969. Max went on to put Rob in charge of the

Grangen production when it moved to the Barossa Valley. Indeed Rob was head of the red

ferments in 1971, which is known to be the best

wine in the entire world of that decade.

This clashed somewhat with the birth of his first

child, Emma, during that vintage but he managed to keep an eye on both.

Then Rob won the role of Wynns Chief


He and his team developed the famous John

Riddoch label alongside viticulturalist Vic

Patrick in 1982.

This was a breakthrough. Vic managed to get

the fruit to such ripeness, and it was such a

wonderful vintage anyway, that it changed the

Wynns winemaking style forever.

They decided to pick up a prize for it in the

House of Commons later that decade.

Rob very happily remained at Wynns until a

Penfolds takeover, and he was home again!

You will have heard of many wines that Rob

was responsible for - and breezily helped to

make famous - as part of the Penfolds and

Wynns groups: Penfolds Grange, Bin 707, Bin

389, St Henri, Rouge Homme, Tulloch,

Hungerford Hill and Leo Buring. In 2001 he began making Somerled.

Private clients had requested a McLaren Vale

Shiraz … but then Rob wondered what it would

be like to just make his own Adelaide Hills

Chardonnay under the label too. I mean, isn’t

the Hills just made for Chardonnay?

But isn’t the Hills also made for French-style

sparkling? Wonderful, let’s add one of those


The tiny Somerled brand slowly but surely grew,

through exports and other distribution, until

the family decided that it was something that

needed to be hand sold here, back home in the

Hills. So Rob and family found themselves right


Hopefully while you are here you may spy this

gentle soul at the bar. He is widely respected in

the industry, patient, curious, traditional yet

original, and has a lovely but dry (watch out!)

sense of humour. He is loved dearly.

Keep an eye on the Moody clan via their weekly blog, on the front page of!

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