All change at Hungerford Hill
Established Hunter Valley winery Hungerford Hill has a new owner and a new winemaker. Sam Arnaout, the owner of Iris Capital, bought the business last week from James Kirby – who had owned it since 2002 and substantially embellished the property and its wines. Hungerford Hill (tastings) is the second recent investment in the Hunter by Iris Capital after it purchased of Sweetwater Estate, a vineyard and mansion house, earlier this year.
Accomplished winemaker Bryan Currie has been appointed as senior winemaker and general manager of both Hungerford Hill and Sweetwater Estate. Currie distinguished himself over many years at Westend/Calabria (tastings) in the Riverina before joining McWilliam’s Wines (tastings).
Currie is a talented and highly awarded winemaker and an active wine show judge. He was a finalist in Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine’s Winemaker of the Year award in 2012, a Len Evans Tutorial scholar in 2007 and was selected by the wine industry as a Future Leader in 2009.
Hungerford Hill was established in the Hunter in 1967 and has been through many changes of identity, direction and ownership. Where once it owned vineyards as far afield as Coonawarra, it now seems settled as a NSW winery. It makes wines from Hilltops, Tumbarumba, Gundagai and Riverina as well as the Hunter. And its restaurant, Muse (and previously as Terroir) is one of the finest in the Hunter.