Wine Picks LCBO Vintages Release April 27, 2019

The LCBO Vintages Release of April 27 2019 has some solid wines at great prices.  Maybe the PACO & LOLA ALBARIÑO will become your new summer wine pick? Or the MATAHIWI ESTATE SAUVIGNON BLANC 2018 scoring well over 90 for $17.00. 

Exciting news folks!   I now have access to the media tastings for the LCBO Vintages release!  That means I will be able to  review and rate  a curated sample of some 60 + wines  from each release.

Subscribers to The Wine Lover’s Kitchen newsletter will  get my personal highlights of each release, in all price ranges a few days before the release date.  Not on the mailing list yet?  You can sign up here to receive your advance reviews!

Full reviews will also be available to members of in advance of the release date.

I will continue to highlight the best value wines under $35 as usual prior to the release date and my personal highlights will be available to all on-line a week after the release date.

Use this link to check out availability of wines closest to you – LCBO store locator. Just enter the product number in the search field in the upper right corner. When the product page comes up click on the Select Store button on the right margin.  A dialogue box will come up. Add your postal code to get a list of stores closest to you that have it in stock.

Or you can now order LCBO products on-line  .  Of late LCBO have indicated all release wines are available for on-line  ordering.

Here are my picks for some of the best value wines under $35 in this release.

Sparkling Wines

(Traditional method, AP, Burgundy, France)

401018 (D)      Score 91  $21.95

David Lawrason of says ‘This is a quite complex, firm and well balanced cremant, one that could easily pass for Champagne thanks to that marzipan, honey butter, dried flowers and peach complexity. There is a touch of sweetness here, but firm acidity holds it in place. The length is excellent. ‘
Medium-bodied & Flavourful

White Wines


MATAHIWI ESTATE SAUVIGNON BLANC 2018 (Wairarapa, North Island, New Zealand)

402677 (XD) Score: 95    $17.00

Decanter Asia Wine Awards notes: ‘Towering over the competition, this stand-out Sauvignon Blanc is sophisticated and subtle with sweet fruits and a touch of basil. Lovely and lifted with a fresh, rounded texture. ‘
Aromatic & Flavourful

TAPIZ ALTA COLLECTION CHARDONNAY 2016 (Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina)

629410 (XD)    Score 91  $19.95

James Suckling of  says ‘A soft and juicy wine with lots of creme brulêe and dried apple character. Full body, fruity and flavorful. Lots going on here. Drink now.’
Full-bodied & Rich

LARRY CHARUBINO PEDESTAL CHARDONNAY 2017 (Margaret River, Western Australia)

633446(XD)   Score  91     $24.95

Campbell Mattinson of says ‘It’s an accessible style, mostly pears and stone fruit flavours though with cuts of apple appearing as the palate progresses. No drapes, no shutters, no blinds; it’s a window to the variety, open and clear. ‘
Full-bodied & Rich

PACO & LOLA ALBARIÑO 2017 (DO Rías Baixas, Spain) 

350041 (XD)     Score :  90      $19.95

John Szabo, MS of  says ‘ Another fine, fragrant, highly perfumed albariño from the reliable house of Paco & Lola, with inviting floral notes and plenty of green citrus. I love the crisp, dry, refreshing palate, the sharp, ripe acids and the very good length. A superior example. ‘
Aromatic & Flavourful

KUNDE CHARDONNAY 2016 (Sonoma County, California, USA)

639716  (XD) $24.95    Score: 90

David Lawrason of  says ‘Kunde is an impressively large Sonoma-based producer with 2,800 acres in Sonoma Valley. This is fine, typical Sonoma chardonnay with quite complex and nuanced aromas of ripe apple, hints of orange, hazelnut and buttered toast. It is medium full bodied with slightly sharp acidity, some richness [and] very good flavour intensity. The length is very good to excellent.’
Full-bodied & Rich


Red Wines

(DO Aconcagua Costa, Chile)

541151 (XD)   Score 94     $24.95

James Suckling of  says ‘The intensity of pure blue fruit here in the form of blueberry tea and cranberries, combined with citrus rind and lavender is really impressive. The palate is very structured though with lots of lovely darker berries and bright plums, expansive tannins that remain polished and a driven yet generous finish. So juicy and delicious. Drink now. ‘
Medium-bodied & Fruity

CHAKANA ESTATE SELECTION MALBEC 2016 (Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina)

219261 (XD)  Score 93     $19.95

Patricio Tapia of Descorchados says ‘A new facet of Chakana wines, this is a blend of malbec from Altamira and Gualtallary that’s aged mainly in cement (60%) and the rest in used oak. The fruit is simply delicious – crisp, acidic, and full of cherry notes. It’s a red that beautifully expresses its origin – a mountain wine with all those red fruit notes and herbs and spices, too. And the texture seems to grip the palate powerfully as if it won’t let go until it gets a nice big piece of grilled beef. And while the price might seem like a joke – it’s not.’
Full-bodied & Smooth


943613 (XD)   Score 93     $24.95

Bruce Sanderson of says ‘This red combines a ray of pure cherry with coffee, spice, wild herb and tobacco flavors in a seamless way, while sanguine and iron elements chime in on the finish. Balanced and elegant, with a lingering, complex aftertaste. Drink now through 2035.’
Medium-bodied & Fruity

(AC Rhone, France)

033852(D)  Score: 91   $17.95

Joe Czerwinski of  says ‘Floral and herbal on the nose, the 2016 Cairanne Creation Grosset is a medium to full-bodied, just-ripe wine with elegant fruity notes of raspberries and cherries. It’s silky yet firm, with enough concentration to be capable of aging through 2025. It’s a blend of Carignan, Grenache, Mourvèdre and Syrah, aged in a combination of wooden foudres and cement tanks. Drink Date: 2018-2025.’
Medium-bodied & Fruity

MOULINS DE CITRAN 2009 Second wine of Château Citran (AC Haut-Médoc, Bordeaux, France)

633065     (XD)      Score 91     $29.95

Vintages panel note:  For the 2009, the final blend was roughly 58% Cabernet and 42% Merlot. This has a lovely savoury character as well as considerable black fruit tones, mineral, cedar, coffee and light spice. This is a good price for 2009 Bordeaux. Enjoy it tonight with lamb or veal.’
Medium-bodied & Fruity

(AC Beaujolais, France)

648477 (XD)    Score 90    $19.95

Vintages panel notes:  ‘The vaulted cellar in which the wines of Château de Chénas mature was built in 1730. This is a bright, fresh Gamay with lifted strawberry, ripe red raspberry, light spice, and a touch of toast on the finish. The acidity and tannins make this a fine option for veal.’
Light-bodied & Fruity

Cellar Suggestions

(DO Cachapoal Valley, Chile)

649160 (XD)    Score 94       $24.95

James Suckling of  describes ‘A tight and solid structured cabernet with chocolate, hazelnut and currant character. Full body, some tannins yet polished and very pretty. Needs two to three years to soften. Better in 2020.’
Full-bodied & Smooth

Note:   Sign up for my free bi-weekly newsletter to get my personal wine ratings and recommendation in all prices ranges in advance of each release.  Recommendations will become public a week  after the release date for general viewing.

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