Harwood Hall arose when two winemakers and their families joined forces to pursue their passion for wine Digger Hennessy, former Chief Winemaker Mt Riley, had a vineyard and wanted to make wine with his own fruit. He also wanted to create a great lifestyle for his wife Deb and their kids. Corey Hall, former Chief Winemaker at Matua, already had his own business with his wife Meg, producing wines under the Gem label. However, they wanted to add another brand to the portfolio. Digger and Corey had known each other for years, dating back from when Digger offered Corey his first winemaking job in 1996. Joining forces allowed them to pool their resources and add another level of expertise and energy to the enterprise. Their aim was to produce top quality New Zealand wines that were affordable and approachable. They established Hennessy Hall Wine Co in 2008 as a consultant winemaking and viticulture business, as well as producer of Harwood Hall wines. (Given their surnames, you may wonder why they didn’t just call it Hennessy Hall. Simple: There’s a cognac called Hennessy and nobody likes a court case!) In the first five years, Harwood Hall became a firm favourite with wine lovers in New Zealand, and gained export contracts in the UK, Australia and Singapore.