Steven Spurrier's top wines to put in the cellar
Eileen Hardy: recent vintages
Eileen Hardy Chardonnay is, in my view, the Grange of Australian white wines and Bill Hardy’s presentation of 2012, 2008, 2005 and 2002 confirmed this. Inaugurated in 1986 and taken from the best barrels produced in the Padthaway region, cooler regions have been progressively introduced into the blend, with Tasmania featuring since 2002 and dominant above Yarra since 2008. The 2012 had citrus and floral summer fruits on nose and palate, ripe and vibrant with balanced acidity, great length and a superb future (18.5/20pts; 95/100pts). The 2008, fleshy but firm, will progress for seven years yet (18/93). The Eileen Hardy Shiraz’s first vintage in 1970 was not all Shiraz, but the fruit did come mostly from Padthaway. Since 1987 it has been 100% Shiraz, keeping the core of McLaren Vale fruit with increasing contributions from Frankland River and Clare. The just-released 2010 has vibrant cherry fruit with a lifted, floral note that is pure northern Rhône, berry fruits on the palate with oak blended in, a blend of vigour and elegance to 2025 and beyond (18.25/94). The 2007 was more earthy, the 2001 at its peak, while the 1998, still had richness and lift.
Taken from the December 2013 issue of Decanter magazine
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