Dr. Jean Francois Paul de Castella and his wife, Eleonore, were Swiss from the district of Neuchatel. Sophie Montmoullin, a daughter of another leading Neuchatel family, married Charles Joseph La Trobe, migrating to Port Phillip in 1837. Sophie La Trobe wrote home of the then Colony’s potential and progress in glowing terms. The added encouragement provided by Governor La Trobe resulted in a substantial number of Neuchatel residents migrating, many choosing to settle in the Yarra Valley.
Paul de Castella was born in 1827 and worked for a Swiss Bank before a short trip to England. De Castella arrived in Melbourne in November 1849. In July of the following year he purchased Yering Station from William Ryrie.
De Castella subsequently developed Yering into a world-class winery, attaining wide recognition at London, Paris and Bordeaux Exhibitions, culminating in the award of the only “Grand Pris” presented to the Southern Hemisphere at the Paris Exhibition of 1889.
Eleonore was a sophisticated hostess, who entertained in the grand manner. She instilled in her son Paul an appreciation of gracious living, refined cuisine and quality wines. Eleonore’s Restaurant has been named in her honour. The Australian Vigneron reported in 1889: “The Chateau is a substantial building, surrounded by a 15 foot verandah. On entering one is struck by the loftiness of the rooms, and the handsome fittings and decorations that equal those to be found in an old English home. Mr. de Castella was noted for his hospitality, and most of the Governors and visitors of note in the early days have been royally entertained there.”
The Cheese Trolley at Eleonore’s The trolley encompasses a selection of truly exceptional cheeses sourced locally and from around the world. From one day to the next the varieties can change, however we aim to present an assortment of reoccurring cheeses and always include a range from the Yarra Valley. Cheeses are served with a selection of house made accompaniments
Our cheeses are also available as an additional course for a $10.00 per person supplement
"The Chateau is a substantial building...Mr. de Castella was noted for his hospitality, & most of the Governors & visitors of note in the early days have been royally entertained there."
Australian Vigneron (1889)