Our wine club started almost 50 years ago with two of the biggest names in the game: James Halliday and Len Evans.

There was just one wine deal offered each year in those early days: the Annual Dozen. Legend has it that James and Len would sample hundreds of wines in a single tasting, before handing over the bottles for journalists on The Australian to drain dry. I can imagine the scene!

Nowadays we honour the Annual Dozen tradition each spring – with several blockbuster offers, including the Select Dozen ($16.49 a bottle), the Premium Dozen ($20.99 a bottle) and the Super Premium Six ($36.99 a bottle).

So, drum roll, please: our Annual Dozen selections for 2023 are ready for your appraisal. I’ll tempt you here with the Super Premium Six, described by James as the “crème de la crème”.

The six Super Premium wines have secured the tick of approval from James, The Australian Wine Club president. The line-up includes some of the most prestigious names in Australian wine, along with brands that may be just coming on to your radar, such as Schoolhouse from Coonawarra and Clare Valley’s Gaelic Cemetery. This is a chance to sample some of their very best wines at a fraction of the price.

The six wines normally sell for between $50 and $80 a bottle and have each scored 95 points or better from James and his tasting team at the Halliday Wine Companion.

Time to get excited.

special six

Tahbilk Eric Stevens Purbrick Shiraz 2017

Old-vine shiraz from a truly special five-star winery, dripping with history and charm. Tahbilk is actually Victoria’s oldest family-owned winery and vineyard, established in 1860. The Purbrick family have run Tahbilk for almost 100 years. This 2017 shiraz is described by Halliday’s Jeni Port as “your classic central Victorian shiraz in a nutshell, with a down-to-earth (literally) appeal of baked earth, Aussie bush scents mingling with ripe blackberries and woody oak spice. The palate is full and generous, with a lingering, smoky savouriness”. 95 points. 14.5% alc; RRP $73 a bottle.

SPECIALS $64.99 in any dozen; $36.99 a bottle in Super Premium Six.

Kilikanoon Oracle Shiraz 2016

Premium Clare Valley fruit from an iconic winery. A blockbuster wine, with finesse. Halliday’s Ned Goodwin says: “Dense and impressive, if this is your schtick. Powerful, sure. But energetic, long and far from drying. An arsenal of sexy oak meets licorice back strap, smoked meats, blue to black fruits and a squeegee of anise-scented acidity.” 95 points. 14.5% alc; RRP $96 a bottle.

SPECIAL $36.99 a bottle in Super Premium Six.

Tarrawarra Estate J Block Yarra Valley Shiraz 2019

From one of Yarra’s leading five-star wineries. Halliday’s Philip Rich writes: “A slightly atypical but nonetheless super-impressive and accomplished Yarra shiraz with its Crozes-Hermitage-like aromas of dark fruits, freshly hung meat, black olive and both white and black pepper. Medium bodied and seductively textured, with superfine tannins in support.” 96 points. 13.6% alc; RRP $50 a bottle.

SPECIALS $39.99 in any dozen; $36.99 a bottle in Super Premium Six.

Schoolhouse Coonawarra Shiraz 2019

Concentrated flavours of dark cherries, bay leaf and dark chocolate, supported by elegant tannins and subtle toasted oak. Matured for 12 months in American and French oak. Halliday’s Erin Larking says: “Impossibly blue and bright on the nose – blackberry pie, blueberry and fresh bay leaf. In the mouth the wine is satisfying and fresh, almost uncomplicated in its expression of succulent, saturated fruit flavour. It is velvety and full. The length is very good, it shows promise for the years ahead.” 95 points. 14% alc; RRP $80 a bottle.

SPECIALS $59.99 in any dozen; $36.99 a bottle in Super Premium Six.

Gaelic Cemetery McAskill Cabernet Malbec 2020

The dark fruit and spicy notes of Clare Valley cabernet combine beautifully with the lifted violet aromas of malbec. Halliday’s Erin Larkin says: “The complete picture, as is in my glass right now, is one of undulating power, concentrated fruit, pliable tannins and enduring length of flavour. There is a precision to the engineering of this wine. Glorious.” 95 points. 14.5% alc; RRP $55 a bottle.

SPECIALS $50 a bottle in any dozen; $36.99 a bottle in Super Premium Six.

Heirloom Anevo Fortress McLaren Vale Grenache Touriga Tempranillo 2021

A unique, peerless blend created by McLaren’s star winemaker, Elena Brook. Expressive strawberry and raspberry aromas pique the senses, with blackberries, crushed black pepper, fresh aniseed, orange peel, smoked meat and vanilla notes in the background. Beautifully balanced. James says: “It soars with red fruits that make applause mandatory, then dips into more sombre fruits bordering jam or liqueur.” 95 points. 14.2% alc; RRP $80 a bottle.

SPECIALS $75 a bottle in any dozen; $36.99 a bottle in Super Premium Six.

SUPER PREMIUM SIX One bottle of each wine above for $36.99 a bottle. SAVE $212.

Order by simply clicking the links to our online store or telephone 1300 765 359 Monday to Friday, from 9am to 5pm AEST. Deals are available only while stocks last. The Australian Wine Club is a commercial partnership with Laithwaites Wine, LIQP770016550. Stockhead is partnering with The Australian Wine Club on this offer.