A. Rodda Willow Lake Chardonnay 2018 Back In Stock Offer
Adrian Rodda has been winemaking since 1998, originally working with David Bicknell at Oakridge. He was involved in the development of the superb Oakridge 864 Chardonnay, his final contribution to 864 coming in 2009. At the start of 2010 he and wife Christie, a doctor, moved to Beechworth and co-lease Smiths Vineyard with Mark Walpole of Fighting Gully Road. Smiths Vineyard, planted to chardonnay in 1978, is a veritable jewel. More recently the two have set up their wineries in the historic Mayday Hills Lunatic Asylum, a win on all fronts. JAMES HALLIDAY’S WINE COMPANION
This is an exciting one to be sending to people. I think I get asked about this wine more than just about any other over the year. It is “The Return of the King”. I think these wines need little or no introduction to our customers as we have been pushing them pretty hard for a number of years now and firmly believe Adrian is one of the top handful of Chardonnay producers in the country. That isn’t a new spin, we have said it a number of times.
We had thought this wine had completely sold out, in fact we turned away a lot of people when we offered this the first time around. The initial response to the offer was, predictably, huge. For some reason though it turns out Adrian has been sitting on a palate of the precious juice. I only found out because I pulled one out to drink late last week and emailed through to his distributor asking after the next release (some months away sadly) and he mentioned they had a stash of this still. I am glad I sent that email.
For anyone who is not familiar with these wines here is a very brief breakdown. As Mentioned in the spiel on James Halliday’s Wine Companion Adrian worked for a good long while with Dave Bicknell at Oakridge where he was involved in creating the 864 Chardonnay (some of you may be noticing a theme here). He is now based in Beechworth where he is partnered up with one of the country’s great viticulturalists and he makes, among other things, three single site Chardonnays including the Willow Lake which is one of the top sites in the Yarra. In 2018 Adrian picked up the most prestigious award for Chardonnay in Australia, the James Halliday Chardonnay Challenge Trophy for the previous vintage of this wine (incidentally 864 won the following year).
Having just re-looked (drank) this wine again I have to say, this really is stupendously good and right in the zone of where modern Australian Chardonnay is at right now. It is bang on the money and, cheap for how much style, sophistication and class it delivers.
As I mentioned before there is a palate of this wine on offer, that may sound like a lot be we would have sold that much in an hour or so when the wine was first released. If you missed out then now is the time to get on board. If you managed to grab some the first time around and, like a lot of people, have drunk through your stash then you can top up. If you haven’t had this wine before then get on board. You couldn’t reasonably expect anything more from a wine at anywhere near this price point.