Unless you are Australian, the name Hardy evokes memories of the Hardy Boys Series, exceedingly popular books for young adults, far removed from wine. Today these old associations are being replaced with another powerful brand, as Hardy Wines of Australia ramps up the marketing of its wines with a series of promotions and wine dinners across India. This is very appropriate since pioneering founder, Thomas Hardy’s vision in the 19th century was to “create wines that will be prized in the markets of the world”. Established in 1853, five generations of Hardys since then have made wine their business.
Experienced winemaker and fifth generation family member, William (Bill) Hardy was recently in India with his wife Merilyn promoting wines produced by his family, one of Australia’s largest and iconic wine producers. The William Hardy range – which Bill showcased in India during this visit – was released to celebrate Bill’s 40 years in business in February 2012.
Thomas Hardy and Sons, the original company founded by Thomas Hardy in Adelaide, was sold in January 2011 (along with Constellation Europe) to an Australian private equity company and renamed “Accolade Wines” in June of the same year.
William Hardy Limestone Coast Chardonnay 2014 The 2014 is a dry, medium bodied Chardonnay, pale straw in colour with intense aromatics of melon and white peach. The palate is creamy and textured with delicate sweetness from light oak influence. It has generous length and rich fruity flavours. At its best up to two years, it pairs well with chicken or creamy pastas. South Australia’s Limestone Coast with warm sunny summers allowing full fruit flavours and sugars to develop, is ideally suited for growing Chardonnay.
William Hardy Langhorne Creek Shiraz 2014 The Shiraz 2014 is a full-bodied red wine with intense, dark fruit aromas and hints of blackberry jam. An intensely fruity palate is spiced with flavours of rich black pepper and vanilla. Smooth tannins and balanced acid give this wine great structure and generous length. Roast mutton, grilled vegetables and hard cheese become tastier paired with a Langhorne Creek Shiraz.
The William Hardy range is not in India yet, but the Stamp of Australia range is distributed by Sula Selections. In 1988 Hardys Stamp of Australia was launched at the World Exposition in Brisbane, blending grape varieties from diverse regions. The majority of the grapes used in the range are from warm, inland river regions, producing wines that are full flavoured, fruit forward and smooth.
In the picture: Clockwise from top, left: William (Bill) Hardy, 5th generation family member; a line-up of the wines served at dinner; William Hardy range released in 2012 to honour Bill; dinner guests with Bill Hardy and his wife, Merilyn