Maxwell Wines

A premium boutique producer of wines and meads

  • About Us


    Since 1979, family owned Maxwell Wines, with its eighty acre estate vineyard, has built a reputation for producing hand made, rich and robust reds that combine exquisite fruit quality with structure and finesse. The signature Lime Cave Cabernet and Ellen Street Shiraz reds are acclaimed for their cellaring potential and purity of expression. The white wines achieve freshness and superb varietal character via slow, cool ferments that capture the delicacies of the grapes. At Maxwell’s, we believe “Life’s too short to drink bad wine”.

    The family is also famous for its range of Maxwell Meads, being the most significant producer in the southern hemisphere of this time-honoured, delicious and golden fermented honey. As mead is one of the oldest fermented drinks known to mankind, the late Ken Maxwell was inspired to research and produce what are now highly acclaimed as the benchmark of meads in the world. The Maxwell Meads’ purity of flavour is testament to almost 50 years of family research and development.

    Owned and managed by Mark Maxwell (left), the winery employs a team of wine industry professionals who each take a hands-on (or paws-on) approach to ensuring Maxwell Wines maintains it’s reputation as a premium wine producer.

    The Maxwell Family

    William-James-MaxwellThere has always been a love of wine and the vine in the Maxwell lineage. William James Maxwell, a noted Scottish sculptor, came to Australia in 1875 to do some artistic work on a building in Melbourne, Victoria. However, the cold damp climate of this city played on his health, so he moved three years later to the much more temperate climate of Adelaide, South Australia. A few miles south of the city at Edwardstown, he built a mock castle called “Woodlands Park”, and with the vines on the property made some very acceptable reds that he accumulated in the cellars of his unique home. His son John, with the thought of farming in his mind, acquired a property in the rich valley of McLaren Vale, 40 kilometres south of Adelaide. Here he and his sons ran a mixed farm of fruit, dairy, and of course, vines.

    After the war ended in 1945, John’s youngest son Ken took over the management of the family property. His interest in winemaking also led to a period of employment with Hardys at the historic Tintara Winery in the heart of McLaren Vale. His passion for food and wine further led to the involvement in a revolutionary restaurant, called The Barn, of which he was the first manager.

    In 1970, Ken Maxwell started a small self-contained winery on the eastern edge of his property, and named it Daringa Cellars. Here he and wife Margaret made and sold very high quality red and white wine. In addition, they began to sell an ancient drink, Mead, made from fermented honey. In 1979, Ken sold Daringa to the Dennis family and with Margaret and son Mark, started a new venture, an 80 tonne winery called, appropriately, Maxwell Wines. Within three years, Mark took over the day-to-day management and winemaking of the business, with the sound advice from Ken ever present.

    For more information on the world-renowned McLaren Vale wine region, please visit