About Us –
David and Lori Broadbent have been holidaying in the Stanthorpe district for a number of years, taking advantage of the ambience and relaxed pace the region offers. With an interest in and love of wine, they were amazed at how the region had come-of-age in terms of the quality of the wine on offer. The cool climate wines of the district are unique and there is an abundance of outstanding quality wines being produced.
The couple fell in love with the Granite Belt and the quality and value of its wines so much so that they opted to sell their Brisbane lifestyle in late 2016, and re-fire their lives in Stanthorpe. They felt such a connection with the region that they decided that the place they liked to spend relaxing in their downtime should be the place they call home.
Fortune came their way, when the opportunity arose to purchase a fabulous, premium vineyard with a huge potential. They seized that opportunity and are now living the dream of a life-changing experience in the highest elevated wine district in Australia. They are inspired everyday by both the stillness and the effervescence of the landscape, the hills, the sunsets, and life in the vineyard. This brings a balance to their lives.
In late 2016, David and Lori established the Balancing Rock brand. The label takes its name from the amazing natural granite structure which sits among the Broadbent’s premium Shiraz vines. The rock assumes the role of the vineyard’s guardian – the ever-watchful protector.
David and Lori are Brisbane born-and-bred. In 1998, they co-founded Agenda Management, an Association management company, a business which they continue to run hands-on to this day. Agenda Management is a provider of administrative support services for professional industry Associations and peak body groups. The skills and experiences they have gained, and the challenges they have encountered during their 20 or so years in business, stand them well to build the Balancing Rock brand and be active participants in the industry and in the local community. They have a passion and an interest in wine and a proven dedication and perseverance in their business lives.
David is embracing his new role as a Student of the Land, whilst Lori is utilising her people, marketing and business improvement skills around the operational activities and Cellar Door experience. Luke is currently studying his senior years at Stanthorpe State High School and, as a teenager, is the social media guru, strong vineyard hand and very willing student in the art of driving the ute.
Whilst this is a very different way of life to what the Broadbents had become accustomed to, they are fortunate to have one of the leading viticulturalists and expert winemakers in Australia, Mike Hayes, guiding and mentoring them in the vineyard. Mike advises on best-practice management of the vineyard, vine care and pre and post-harvest operations. A match made in heaven.
OUR WINEMAKER, MIKE HAYES
Mike Hayes is third generation viticulturalist and winemaker. He has made wines on the Granite Belt and in various wine regions around Australia and New Zealand for over 30 years. Mike is known for his passion for integrating viticultural and winemaking techniques. His passion for wine has no bounds.
When making wine, he blends old world techniques and traditions with new world state of the art technology. His invaluable experience in growing wine grapes in our unique climate is essential to producing the best fruit, in order to make the best wine. Mike’s belief is that great wine is made in the vineyard.
In 2012 Mike was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to research alternative varieties in Europe that would suit Granite Belt conditions. He also completed a Masters in Professional Studies specialising in Viticulture and a WSET (Wine and Spirit Education Trust) Advanced Level 3 Certificate in Wine Education which qualifies him world wide to teach about wine to sommeliers.