Eileen Hardy ran what was then a family wine business from 1938, after the death of her husband. She died in 1980 at the age of 87. Padthaway was the early source, but Eileen Hardy Chardonnay has evolved since the first vintage in 1986 and is now a multi-regional blend. It is and always has been the best Chardonnay Hardys can produce each year and belongs among Australia’s very best.
Spicy, toasty, citrus and green apple scents, slightly smoky, struck flint characters too. Serious chardonnay scents. Big, powerful chardonnay flavours. Of an ilk. Constructed and structured. It’s a Very Serious Chardonnay of multi-dimensions and palate-sticking flavour. Has a lot of edifice and sweet-spicy seasoning but works very well. Lots going on.
94 points, The Wine Front (August 2021)
Medium to light yellow colour. The bouquet is quite oak-driven and nutty-toasty, with some buttery, beeswax and honey nuances, the palate full-bodied and generous, round and cuddly. A full-on traditional style chardonnay with full chardonnay complexity of character (including the effects of malolactic), richly textured, with voluminous flavour that fills the mouth and resonates in a long aftertaste. A ripping chardonnay.
96 points, The Real Review (July 2021)
Yarra ValleyThe Yarra Valley was first planted by the Ryrie brothers who explored a way through the Snowy Mountains to the Yarra Valley, planting grapes in 1838 just three years after the foundation of Melbourne. A wine industry (developed by Swiss Settlers particularly Hubert de Castella and Baron Guillaume de Pury in the 1850s) thrived during the gold rush era and heyday of the 19th century. However, the end of the gold rush brought the wine industry into decline and it was not until the 1970’s that the modern wine industry started up again. The region is probably Australia’s best-known cool-climate area, yet it is really a patchwork of meso-climates. This varied topography creates an incredible set of variables. Vineyards are planted on elevations of 50 to 400m on varying aspects and management programmes. The more exposed sites are subject to severe spring frosts and winds. Overall, the area experiences a relatively high rainfall pattern and is known for its temperature extremes during ripening. Site selection is crucial, with the best vineyards often located where the original vines were once planted, generally on sandy clay loams and gravels. The Yarra Valley is well known for high quality Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Blends with Shiraz increasingly garnering attention. Sparkling wine production is also extremely important, with many of Australia’s finest examples produced in the region.