Oh… where to start with all the good value wines in the LCBO Vintages Release Aug 8th 2020! Argentina is a feature with good value Malbecs but France also has many intriguing offerings.
If you try any of these please leave a comment and let everyone know what you thought of it. Feel free to share recommendations or comments on any other wines you have tried as well!
Alta Vista Atemporal Brut Nature Chardonnay/Pinot Noir Sparkling VINTAGES#: 15683 $22.95 Mendoza, Argentina This 90/10 Chardonnay Pinot Noir blend is described as clean and elegant with a balance of fruitiness and lees-iness. Luis Guitiérrez of robertparker.com gives it a 91 and calls it ‘surprisingly good’. Drink now.
There are 2 stand out rosés in this release
Famille Perrin Réserve Rosé 2019 VINTAGES#: 719062 $15.95 Rhône, France the famous Château de Beaucastel family. Look a dry, carefully crafted wine with cherry, strawberry and raspberry.
Marquis d’Aqueria Tavel 2019 VINTAGES#: 556274 $19.95 Rhône, France
The 2018 was ranked #29 on Wine Enthusiasts Top 100 Wines of 2019, so expectations are high for the 2019 as well. Look for intense red fruit and fresh minerality.
2027 Cellars Wismer Vineyard Fox Croft Block Chardonnay 2017 VINTAGES#: 421362 $22.95 Ontario, Canada. This is one of the best Chardonnays Ontario has to offer and worth every penny of its $22.95 price tag. It showcases Ontario terroir with balanced orchard fruits and hints of spice. Trademark good acidity and balance.
Domaine Bousquet Reserve Chardonnay 2018 VINTAGES#: 629451 $16.95 Tupungato, Argentina. Described as full-bodied and rich with juicy stone fruit and a ripe peach finish. James Sucking gave it a 91.
Château Saint Nabor Chardonnay 2019 VINTAGES#: 14036 $14.95 Rhône, France is full-bodied and rich with stone fruit, apple, spice, and light smoke and oak.
For the adventurous there are 2 Picpoul de Pinet on offer from Languedoc. This is an old French varietal, light, fresh, crisp, high acid with a citrus profile and a touch of salinity/minerality. Pairing with seafood is in order here. Either of Jean Luc Colombo Les Girelles Picpoul de Pinet 2018 VINTAGES#: 16412 $17.95 Languedoc, France or Gérard Bertrand Terroir PicPoul de Pinet 2019 VINTAGES#: 13000 $16.95 Languedoc, France would be good bets to try.
I don’t think I have ever had a bad Argentinian Malbec. This release has good value ones starting with La Celia Reserva Malbec/Cabernet Franc 2017 VINTAGES#: 618280 $14.95 Mendoza, Argentina a full- bodied, smooth, fruity wine with red berries and plums that James Suckling gave a 91 score. Sound like an easy going patio-pour.
La Mascota Malbec 2018 VINTAGES#: 555805 $16.95 Mendoza, Argentina. this wine won 95 points at International Wine Challenge 2019, The notes describe ‘restrained richness’ with cherry, violets and spices. Oak and vanilla on a long finish. Sounds like very good value.
On the higher end of the scale, El Esteco 1947 Old Vines Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 VINTAGES#: 15082 $24.95 Cafayate Valley, Argentina got a 94 from James Suckling who describes earthy, spicy characteristics along with fresh black currants, plums and mulberries. Still firm and ‘chewy’, decant if drinking now or hold til 2023.
One of my new-found fascinations – Bonarda, is show cased in La Posta Estela Armando Bonarda 2018 VINTAGES#: 261586 $15.95 Mendoza, Argentina. James Suckling gave it a 91. Expect fun and fruity here with raspberry and anise. Drink now.
Château de Ribebon 2016 VINTAGES#: 12281 $15.95 AC Bordeaux Supérieur, France is a Merlot dominant Bordeaux blend thata James Suckling gave a 91 and describes juicy red plum and berries with impressive balance and a persistent finish.
Fiuza Premium Reserva Alicante Bouschet 2016 VINTAGES#: 631846 $18.95 Tejo, Portugal. Alicante Bouschet makes for a big wine, intense and dense with rich black fruit. This one ranked #69 in Wine Enthusiasts Top 100 Wines of 2018.
Viña Real Crianza 2016 VINTAGES#: 657411 $16.95 Rioja, Spain. Luis Gutiérrez gave this a 91 describing remarkable depth and complexity for the price point – fresh and balanced. If you are a Tempranillo fan this one’s for you!