McWilliam’s Wines is not only known for producing premium wines, but are also the proud owners of other high end wineries such as Mount Pleasant, Brand’s Laira and Evans & Tate. With these labels in its portfolio covering several distinct regions (the Riverina district and the Hilltops region in New South Wales, Mount Pleasant in the Hunter Valley, Margaret River and Coonawarra), McWilliam’s is offering a diversified selection of reds and whites to suit any wine lover’s palette. From this assortment, I have cherry picked wines which are bargain buys at McWilliam’s cellar door using their current coupon code offering a generous $50 discount on all purchases over $100.
McWilliam’s Hanwood Estate Winery was established in 1917, producing some of the most recognised wines in Australia today. One of their two flagship wines, the 1877 Shiraz Cabernet, is a multiple award winning traditional Australian blend, but most other reds have also scored over 90 points by the experts such as James Halliday. The current 2008 vintage of the 1877 Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon sells for $300 a case or $50 a bottle, so the discount coupon effectively gets you one of the six bottles for free. This wine is currently available at WineSelectors for $313.50 or $52.25 a bottle, but I have even found some places selling it for $82 a bottle.
Another highly reviewed McWilliam’s red is the Hilltops Shiraz, which scored 94 points. The 2013 vintage contains slowly ripened grapes due to the year’s perfect weather conditions resulting in an elegant and full flavour Shiraz. 6 bottles of this red from the Appellation series works out at just $82 (including the coupon discount), while Crackawines has the same case of six on sale for $113.92. If you prefer whites, for the same price you can also go for the 2013 Tumbarumba Chardonnay, another award winning McWilliam’s wine from the same series. The price on this cool climate Chardonnay ranges between $114 and $130 for the case of six elsewhere online.
McWilliam’s other winery, Mount Pleasant’s specialties come from the heart of the Hunter Valley. Their celebrated styles include the Lovedale Semillon from the flagship range, which you can pick up for $238 after the discount (case of six). The 2007 vintage has bagged 7 gold medals and a trophy, encouraging Mr. Halliday to rate this white at 96 points. Although WineStar is only charging $2 more for the case, you would be looking at paying between $270 and $300 for it at ALDI, Dan Murphy’s and Crackawines. For wine lovers on a lower budget, the coupon can also be used on the Vineyard collection Eight Acres Semillon, dropping the price to $88 on the case of six. Don’t misjudge the lower price as a sign of lower quality though. This wine is Mount Pleasant’s most floral and expressive Semillon with aromas of citrus blossom, rosewater and zesty ripe lime, delivering crisp and refreshing pleasant acid flavours of sweet lemon citrus notes.
And as for the Hunter Valley reds, although you would have to pay $120 for a single bottle of Shiraz from the Block range, for the same price (or actually $50 less with the coupon) you can try a whole case of six Shiraz from Mount Pleasant’s Vineyard range. The 2011 vintage High Paddock Shiraz from this range works out at just $70 for a half dozen using the coupon, which is 50% off prices elsewhere. The 2011 Rosehill Shiraz, from the Heritage range, is another example of a good value buy at a total of $130 for the case of six. This will save you a minimum of $35 on current market prices.
Evans & Tate wines display the characteristics of the varieties planted in Margaret River, which terroir is known for its well-drained gravel soils, Mediterranean climate and maritime location. They have focused on maximising fruit quality in the vineyard, along with producing wines that balance power and elegance. Evans & Tate offer various entry level reds and whites at very reasonable prices, however I would recommend using the coupon code on the high-end premium Redbrook series. The Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and the Chardonnay from this series works out at $28.66 a bottle after the discount, 20% off the next best price I could find online.
If you’re a Chardonnay fan, you could save another $8 a bottle if you go for the Pemberton Chardonnay, which is a perfectly balanced white with flavours ranging through white peach, grapefruit and nectarine. It’s also worth mentioning that one of the lowest value orders you can make using the $50 off coupon at McWilliam’s online would be on the Metricup Road red and white blends. You’ll only have to spend $64 for a half dozen (+shipping) of this widely sold series by Evans & Tate that would have cost you over $100 everywhere else.
And last, but not least, the winery of Brand’s Laira (situated in the heart of the legendary ‘Terra Rossa’ region) is the home of Coonawarra’s oldest single vineyard Shiraz. The winery was named after the first custodian, Erik Brand, and the ship Laira that carried the vines which were first planted in 1893. The 2010 vintage Brand’s Laira One Seven One Cabernet Sauvignon is on of the most highly spoken about wines from Brand’s Laira and is listed on Jim’s Cellars page at $72 a bottle, or $420 for a case of six. Using the coupon you can purchase the case directly from the cellar door for eighty bucks less, at $340.
The Blockers Cab Sav is another (more affordable) award winning red by Brand’s Laira, selling for below $20 a bottle – the case of six would only cost you $82 at McWilliam’s vs. Dan Murphy’s $105 price tag. Brand’s Laira Blockers is a classic Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon with fragrances of cedar, red berry and tobacco notes, and the palate is rich, textured and long.