Wine Picks LCBO Release Feb 3, 2018

This release features Mediterranean wines, some tried and true and some quirky.  There are a couple of Shiraz in the 90s @ $22.95 and a high scoring Chardonnay at  $17.95 that seems like twice the price.

Use this link to check out availability of wines closest to you – LCBO store locator. Just enter the product number and your postal code to get a list of stores closest to you that have it in stock.



035204   Score 94  $17.95

Frank Baldock of says  ‘An exquisite melange of dried fruits, roasted nuts, honey, toffee, mocha and truffly forest floor notes. And that’s just the bouquet! On the palate it’s medium sweet with clove, walnut oil, espresso, raisins and orange zest. Here’s a lovely sipper of immense length and subtlety to enjoy by the fire as you welcome in the days of fall and winter. And it’ll keep, with the cork back in, for weeks. Serve all by itself or with cheese, fruit and nuts.


Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada)

546291  Score 92  $29.95
Vintage panel notes:  ‘Top marks to Flat Rock for releasing this wine just in time to toast silver medallist Patrick Chan’s performance at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. This local hero features soft notes of apple, plum and honey with a light, lacy mousse. Figuring out the perfect pairing? Try with crab-based appetizers, or lightly salted popcorn or chips.’ Medium-bodied & Flavourful


LAPOSTOLLE LE ROSÉ 2016 (Colchagua Valley Chile)

524967 Score 91  $17.95

Think ahead and dream of spring! James Suckling of says ‘This is the best rosé of Chile and better than many wines from France’s Côtes de Provence. Medium body, stone, strawberry and hints of cream. Long and fresh. Hints of white pepper. A blend of syrah, cinsault, grenache, and carignan. Drink now.’ Medium-bodied & Dry

White Wines


527226      Score 93      $26.95
Decanter World Wine Awards notes: ‘100% Sauvignon Blanc. A smoky nose with light fruit character. Bright and crunchy flavours of yellow plum and grapefruit on the palate match well with the tingling acidity and the attractive touch of bitterness in the finish.’ Aromatic & Flavourful

NOVELLUM CHARDONNAY 2016 (Rousillon, France)

390781 Score 92 $17.95
This is consistently being praised as an exceptional value by  many reviewers. Jeb Dunnuck of says ‘A sensational wine that will compete with wines five times the price, the 2016 Novellum Chardonnay is the real deal and actually reminded me of a Chardonnay from Mark Aubert in California’s Sonoma County. White peach, crushed rocks, spice and brioche notes all emerge from this medium to full-bodied Chardonnay that has depth, layered texture and length. Buy it.’ Full-bodied & Rich


Prädikatswein  (Pfalz, Germany)

523944     Score 92     $21.95
Tasting Note from Hochbenn has been a prized site since Roman times, thanks to the moisture-retaining qualities of its soils – mostly loess with patches of
limestone and red sandstone and limestone – and south- to southeast-facing exposure. The warmth of the spot is reflected in this wine, an explosion of exotic spice and tropical fruit flavor. It recalls gewürztraminer in its exuberance, with notes of lavender and wasabi peas adding a wildness to the more typical citrus notes of Riesling. But then there’s the structure, firm
and linear, carrying the wine with clarity and poise. Best Buy’  Aromatic & Flavourful


249623       Score 92      $29.95

Here is  a chance to enjoy a Grand Cru wine without breaking the bank!  Anne Krebiehl, MW,  of Wine Enthusiast says ‘There are mere hints of beeswax and marzipan on the nose. The palate opens into a structured, bright and well-lit space of pear peel, pear juice and a wonderfully bitter edge. This is off-dry and concentrated, definite but with a light touch. There is an intriguing hint of bitter orange peel that draws you in and pull this onto a higher plane.’  Aromatic & Flavourful



439554      Score 90      $15.95

John Szabo, MS, of says ‘Another lovely, fullish, flavourful, ripe but balanced, seriously stony and fruity white here from Avondale, a staunchly organic producer
based in Paarl. This has quite amazing depth and length in the price category. Lovely smoky minerality. I’d almost think this was being sold at 50% off the regular price.’ Full-bodied & Rich


686600           Score 91       $19.95
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, MW of says ‘The 2016 Riesling opens with notes
of chalk dust and wet pebbles over a core of lime juice, yuzu zest and lemongrass. Light-bodied and bone dry with a racy line of acidity cutting through the intense citrus and mineral flavors, it finishes with great freshness and length. Drink 2017-2028.’  Aromatic & Flavourful

(I might have to try this just to find out what yuzu zest is????)

REd Wines

WYNNS COONAWARRA ESTATE SHIRAZ 2015 (Coonawarra, South Australia)

433060       Score 95       $22.95

Jane Faulkner of says  ‘Get this: a youthful, vibrant shiraz
with depth of flavour, keen price and ready now. No pretensions of reaching lofty heights of the flagship Michael but this can stand proud with its core of juicy fruit, perfect seasoning of spice and oak, ultrafine tannins on its smooth, supple medium-bodied palate. It just tastes good. Drink By: 2024. Special Value.  Full-bodied & Smooth

TEUSNER THE RIEBKE SHIRAZ 2015 (Barossa Valley, South Australia)

048470       Score 94       $22.95

James Halliday of describes ‘Deep colour; a full-bodied shiraz
in the best tradition of Barossa Valley, new philosophies changing the guard without losing the experience of multi generations of grapegrowers and makers. Black fruits, bitter chocolate and savoury tannins fill the senses. Drink By: 2035. Special Value.’  Full-bodied & Smooth

MURPHY-GOODE MERLOT 2013 (California, USA)

059295        Score 90      $22.95

Jim Gordon of Wine Enthusiast describes ‘Good fruit concentration and a velvety texture make this deeply colored, dry wine substantial enough for a special occasion. It smells like spicy oak and tastes like ripe black cherries and blackberries, with a smooth mouthfeel. #77 on the
Wine Enthusiast 2016 Best Buy Top 100.’  Full-bodied & Smooth

MOUNT RILEY SYRAH 2016 (Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand)

535856 N/R $18.95

Vintage Panel Notes:  ‘ Marlborough is known for its Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, but Marlborough Syrah is something of a rarity. This one has the floral, pepper and dark berry notes of a Northern Rhône Syrah, plus some jammy blackberry aromas. Pour this with a simple beef stew and contemplate whether Syrah might not just be your new go-to Marlborough
wine style’.  Full-bodied & Smooth

(AC Beaujolais, France) 

527051 (XD)  Score 90  $19.95
Neal Martin of says ‘The 2015 Beaujolais Villages Climat Le Tracot underwent a semi-carbonic maceration for 15 days before maturation in vat. It has a lovely redcurrant and strawberry pastille bouquet that has wonderful definition and primal exuberance. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp tannin, very well structured with fine, almost chalky tannin. Quite simply, this is a Beaujolais Villages equal to a majority of village cru Beaujolais. Superb.’
Light-bodied & Fruity

Experiment with lesser known wine regions

If you are feeling adventurous or just want to expand your wine knowledge of regions that are not on offer every day in Canada, here are some in this release that are getting high points for being true to their type.

ARGYROS ASSYRTIKO 2016 (PDO Santorini, Greece)

387365  (XD)     Score 93     $27.95

Joanna Simon of  Decanter says ‘Appetisingly fresh, zippy nose: lime juice, pears and salty sea-spray. Beautifully fresh, dry and intense with incisive, but modulated, acidity and an elegantly
textural feel. Fruit in the citrus spectrum. Palate goes on and on. Drinking Window: 2017-
2024.’ Aromatic & Flavourful

INZOLIA DEI FORNELLI 2016 (DOC Sicilia, Italy)
750 mL (XD) $22.95
Vintage Panel notes: ‘Inzolia, a grape long associated with the production of the fortified wine
Marsala, is now being used to craft crisp, dry white wines such as this: aromatic and
expressive with a winning, characterful nose. Elegant and refreshing, with ripe melon and a
vibrant, bracing lemony acidity. A superb option for seafood.’ Aromatic & Flavourful

FEUDO MACCARI NOTO NERO D’AVOLA  2015(IGP Terre Siciliane, Italy)
339101 Score 91    $16.95
(Tenuta Sette Ponti)
James Suckling of says ‘Very aromatic and enticing with dried strawberry and spice character. Medium to full body, silky tannins and a savory finish. Hints of citrus and berry on the finish. Drink now.’  Full-bodied & Smooth

PINACLE DE FAKRA 2012 (Kfardebian Valley, Lebanon)

641670 (XD)    GOLD     $21.95
(Château Fakra)
TASTING NOTE : ‘Beautiful, fairly deep, clean red. Quite delicate nose of stonefruits, ripe cherry and a whiff of smoke. Full, powerful attack yet refined, closely-integrated tannins. The finish stays fruit-driven with a jammy tone’. Medium-bodied & Fruity


Cellar Suggestions

PORTAS DA HERDADE RESERVA 2014 (Vinho Regional Alentejano, Portugal)
(Companhia das Quintas)

404418 (XD) Score 91     $15.95
Roger Voss of Wine Enthusiast says ‘From a group of estates that has properties in the Douro, Lisboa and Beira, this wine is finely structured and richly textured. It has layers of tannins supporting its dense berry fruit. With its juicy acidity and black currant flavor, it’s likely to age
further. Drink from 2018.’ Full-bodied & Firm

LUA CHEIA OLD VINES RED 2015 (DOC Douro, Portugal)

266882 (XD)  Score 90     $13.95

Roger Voss of  Wine Enthusiast says ‘This perfumed old-vine field blend is rich and stylish. It has weight without power, a fine combination of lively red fruit and firm tannins, and
will age well for years. Drink from 2019. Best Buy.’  Medium-bodied & Fruity

670505  750 mL (XD) $16.95

Arnaud Sié crafts this wine from 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah, and you can expect it to reflect
the concentration and density for which the region is known. Look for a wine with impressive
structure and balance, tangy dark fruit, cassis, black pepper and underbrush tones and a
food-friendly acidity. These are wines that can be cellared for 5-7 years after vintage.’
Full-bodied & Smooth


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