April 29 2023 LCBO Vintages Release -Wine Picks <$40

The April 29 2023 LCBO Vintages Release has some Sparklings for Mother’s Day, Sauvignon Blanc from around the world and lots of red gems.

BUT… think about stocking up on good value this release because the May 13 release is only on-line and a FEW select flagship stores- Toronto dominated. What are they thinking??? On-line ordering seemed like it might give all of us equal access to some interesting wines but that has not been my experience. The ordering system has been so wonky I have never successfully received an on-line-only Vintage selection. Let’s hope this doomed experiment gets a quick death…..

Meanwhile – there are lots of good summer values in this release so think about stocking up for May long weekend, Mother’s Day and the upcoming deck and dock season!


DOMAINE STE. MICHELLE BRUT ROSÉ SPARKLING $23.95 Vintages # 99442Traditional method, Columbia Valley, Washington, USA. This gets high praise from Clive Pursehouse, decanter.com who describes strawberry, and raspberry creme on the nose and palate with bright acidity and ‘fantastic mousse’. Stock up for Mother’s Day now! XD – 14 g/L

ALBINO ARMANI EXTRA DRY CONEGLIANO VALDOBBIADENE PROSECCO SUPERIORE $18.95 Vintages # 16602 DOCG, Friuli, Italy This gets a 91 from Othmar Kiem & Simon Staffler of the respected falstaff.com. Look for an aromatic nose showing white rose petals, banana and fresh apricots, a fruity fresh palate and an crisp, lovely mousse. Enjoy with Mother’s Day Lunch! D – 21 g/L


FLAT ROCK PINK TWISTED ROSÉ 2021 $17.95 Vintages # 39974 VQA Niagara Peninsula Vic Harradine of winecurrent.com gives this a 90 and describes it as ‘Exceptional Value’. Look for citrus, pear and quince aromas with zesty, tangy lemon/lime flavours. Enjoy with Salmon in Puff Pastry with Lime Cream. (XD – 6 g/L)

If that is not available check out Oyster Bay Rosé 2022 $22.95 Vintages #493171. It is also fruity and zesty with strawberry and melon notes.

White Wines

AVELEDA LOUREIRO 2020 $13.95 Vintages #646067 , DOC Vinho Verde, Portgual. This gets the ‘cheap and cheerful’ award and a 97 from Decanter World Wine Awards, 2021.
100% Loureiro, look for red apple skin, jasmine and fennel notes with a lovely fresh mouthfeel and a lingering finish. Perfect for Strawberry Balsamic Crostini on the deck!
(XD – 7 g/L)

ROUTE 62 SAUVIGNON BLANC 2022 $15.95 Vintages # 31090 WO Western Cape KWV, South Africa South Africa is gaining recognition as a respected Sauvignon Blanc producer. Look for ‘tangy lemon, apple, passion fruit, cut grass and lively acidity in this classically styled South African Sauvignon Blanc. Enjoy with Asparagus Soup with Parmesan Custard (XD – 5 g/L)

YALUMBA ORGANIC VIOGNIER 2021 $16.95 Vintages # 288217 South Australia This gets as 94 from Sam Kim of wineorbit.co.nz. Look for apricot, tropical fruit and citrus with a rich texture and beautifully balanced acidity. According to Sam it offfers ‘awesome drinking’ so enjoy with Melon and Crispy Prosciutto Salad. (XD – 3 g/L)

LEYDA GARUMA SINGLE VINEYARD SAUVIGNON BLANC 2021 $17.95 Vintages #99309 Coastal vineyards, DO Valle de Leyda, Chile. Chile is also coming into its own as far as Sauvignon Blanc production goes. This gets a 93 from Patricio Tapia of guiadescorchados.cl. It is showing its granite soil roots with delightful herbal/citrus notes with ‘piercing’ acidity. Plan to enjoy with food like Lemon Ricotta Pasta with Asparagus and Hazelnuts. (XD – 4 g/L)

SIDEWOOD CHARDONNAY 2019 $18.95 Vintages # 186346 Adelaide Hills, South Australia. Sidewood is always a reliable choice. This one gets a 92 from Sam Kim of wineorbit.co.nz. Look for fruity apricot, melon with nutty notes. The palate has ‘subtle complexity, finishing long and supple. (XD – 2 g/L)

Red Wines

CHÂTEAU MAISON NOBLE SAINT MARTIN 2019 $16.95 Vintages #24495 AC Bordeaux Supérieur, France This gets a 94 from Decanter World Wine Awards, 2020 . 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, it is showing black fruits with hints of vanilla, cacao and spice. (XD – 2 g/L)

FIUZA EMINENTE RESERVA TINTO 2020 $16.95 Vintages #646042 Vinho Regional Tejo, Portugal This gets a 91 from Roger Voss of Wine Enthusiast who describes it as rich with smoky tannins and dense black fruits. Enjoy with Pistachio, Black Olive Crusted Beef Steak .(D – 8 g/L)

ALCEÑO TWELVE 12 MESES MONASTRELL 2019 $17.00 Vintages #398925 DO Jumilla, Spain James Suckling gives this a 91 and describes herbal, fruity notes with licorice, wet earth and black pepper. Tannins are chalky and finish is firm. Plan to enjoy with Tuscan Ribs With Balsamic Glaze . (XD – 5 g/L)

XAVIER VIGNON CÔTES DU RHÔNE 2020 $19.95 Vintages #297317 Rhone, France James Suckling gives this a 93 and describes berries, Mediterranean herbs, licorice and smoke. This needs some time in the cellar so enjoy in 2025 with Basil Pesto Tomato Pizza.(XD – 2 g/L)

CAVE SPRING ESTATE GROWN CABERNET FRANC 2020 $19.95 Vintages #523001 Beamsville Bench, Niagara Escarpment, Ontario. Megan Krigbaum of winealign.com gives this a 90. Cab Franc is becoming the new fruity darling of Ont red wine production. More body and complexity than the Gamay we love to promote INMHO! This is
well-integrated and balanced with ripe red plums, cherries, barrel spice, and green bell peppers. Good length. (XD – 2 g/L)

FABRE MONTMAYOU RESERVA CABERNET FRANC 2021 $21.95 Vintages #492736 Mendoza, Argentina Compare the Ontario Cab Franc with this one that gets a 95 from Decanter World Wine Awards, 2022. This one is ‘brooding, with plush aromas of dark fruit and black spice’ an earthy palate and graceful tannins. (XD – 3 g/L)

LA POSTA FAZZIO MALBEC 2020 $19.95 Vintages #444687 Tupungato, Mendoza, Argentina This gets a 92 from Patricio Tapia of guiadescorchados.cl, who describes generous black fruits and notes of sweet spices. Firm tannins. Enjoy with Juicy Grilled Pork Chops. (XD – 3 g/L)

MONTES ALPHA SYRAH 2020 $20.95 Vintages # 612 DO Valle de Colchagua, Chile From one of Chile’s most iconic producers, James Suckling gives this a 93 and calls it ‘astonishing value’. He describes aromas of tarry blackberries, peppercorn, dark spices on the nose and palate. Chalky tannins and a long, creamy finish. Drink now or over the next 10 years! (XD – 4 g/L)

HEARTLAND STICKLEBACK RED 2021 $19.95 Vintages #116574 Langhorne Creek, South Australia This is a fun easy drinking offering from one of Australia’s legendary winemakers, Ben Glaetzer. Look for ripe dark fruit along with spicy savoury notes. Enjoy with Double Bourbon Bacon Burgers. (XD – 2 g/L)

GIACOMO MORI CHIANTI 2018 $23.95 Vintages #68858 Tuscany, Italy This gets a 92 from Antonio Galloni of vinous.com who calls it ‘absolutely delicious’ with sweet red cherry, white pepper, mint. Orange zest and floral notes add interest as well. I want this with my favourite Spaghetti and Meatballs! (XD – 5 g/L)

April 29 2023 LCBO Vintages Release -Wine Picks <$40April 29 2023 LCBO Vintages Release -Wine Picks <$40

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