CASILLERO DEL DIABLO RESERVA PRIVADA CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2017, DO Maipo Valley, Chile


Cost: $19.95 (Sale price until April 26, 2020: $16.25)
Grape: Cabernet Sauvignon
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO General List
Country: Chile
Region: Maipo Valley
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Casillero del Diablo
Alcohol:  13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

Classic Chilean style Cab with lots of blackcurrants

Tasting Note: Deep ruby in colour with medium to high tannin, good acidy this wine features blackcurrants, plum, blackberries, spinach leaves, turmeric, cassis, cedar, vanilla & peppermint.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with Asiago cheese.

My Opinion:  Recommended

Tasted: April 2, 2020

LCBO: 570754

GUILLAUME AURÈLE VIOGNIER 2018, IGP Pay D’OC, France


Cost: $14.95 (Clearance price: $12.00)
Grape: Viognier
Category: White Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: France
Region: Southern France
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Alma Cersius
Alcohol:  13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

Not complex but an excellent valued Viognier showing bright fruits & just pleasant drinking

Tasting Note: Bright gold in colour this wine features apricot, peach and honey.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with Bouillabaisse & Rouille.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Amazing Buy at the clearance price

Best Buy

Tasted: March 29, 2020

LCBO: 380741

CHÂTEAU DES CHARMES BLANC DE BLANC 2015, Méthode Traditionnelle, VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $34.95 (Clearance price: $24.50)
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Canada
Region: Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Château des Charmes
Alcohol:  12.0% Alcohol/Vol.

An aged Blanc de Blanc with freshness

Tasting Note: Light gold in colour with a fine mousse featuring baked bread, lemon, pear, green apples, vanilla and white honey.

Interesting Point: Bottle aged of this wine on the lees for a minimum of two years and disgorge each bottle just before it leaves the winery. I preferred this wine in slender Champagne style glass vs the larger mouth stemware. The wine shows more complexity.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with shrimp tempura.

My Opinion: Recommended

Best Buy at the clearance price

Tasted: March 29, 2020

LCBO: 423111

JEAN-LUC COLOMBO LE PAVILLON DES COURTISANES CAIRANNE 2016, AOC Cairanne, France


Cost: $21.95
Grape: 80% Grenache, 20% Syrah
Category: Red Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: France
Region: Cairanne
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Jean-Luc Colombo
Alcohol:  14.0% Alcohol/Vol.

Not a complex wine but it’s rich in flavour & substance, plus it’s priced reasonably

Tasting Note: Medium ruby in colour this wine features bramble fruit, plums, thyme, white pepper, graphite, black tea & violets on the nose. Full body with good acidity and firm but not aggressive tannin.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with Tomato Sauce Base, Mozzarella, Double Smoked Bacon and Sausage, Topped with Prosciutto and Basil Pizza.

My Opinion: Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: March 27, 2020

LCBO: 120717

NIAGARA COLLEGE TEACHING WINERY BALANCED MERLOT 2018, VQA Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $18.95
Grape: Merlot
Category: Red Wine
Location: Winery
Country: Canada
Region: Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Niagara College Teaching Winery
Alcohol:  13.0% Alcohol/Vol.

A simple, juicy, easy drinking yet elegant Ontario Merlot with a nice price tag

Tasting Note: Ruby to purple in colour this wine has light tannin and features plum, blackberry, mulberry and vanilla.

Interesting Note: As of this review, this wine is only available pre-release to Wine Club Members.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with pepperoni, mushroom & tomato pizza.

My Opinion: Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: March 23, 2020

NIAGARA COLLEGE TEACHING WINERY LES MARMITONS GASTRONOMY UNFILTERED PINOT NOIR 2017, VQA Vinemount Ridge, Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $24.95
Grape: Pinot Noir
Category: Red Wine
Location: Winery
Country: Canada
Region: Vinemount Ridge, Niagara Region, Ontario
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Niagara College Teaching Winery
Alcohol:  13.0% Alcohol/Vol.

Elegance & taste at its Best. Styled in the classical Burgundian Pinot. Currently, one of the best Canadian Pinot Noir I’ve tasted & all this for under $25.

Tasting Note: Light garnet in colour this wine features cherry, fraise du bois (wild strawberry), mulberry, Champagne mushrooms, earthy, tobacco leaves, All Spice and peat moss on the nose.

Interesting Point: The fruit for this wine was sourced from the Westcott Vineyard on Vinemount Ridge, a blend of the Burgundy clones 777 and 667. The fruit was allowed to ferment spontaneously, aged for 14 months in French oak barrels, then bottled by hand with no fining or filtration.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 5-7 years or pair it with seared duck with blueberry.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Best Buy and Top Pick

Tasted: March 26, 2020

KEW BARREL AGED BLANC DE BLANC 2014, Méthode Traditionnelle, VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $29.95 (Clearance Price: $24.00)
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: Sparkling Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: Canada
Region: Beamsville Bench, Niagara Region, Ontario
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Kew Vineyards
Alcohol:  12.0% Alcohol/Vol.

A rich vintage Blanc de Blanc Champagne style at a quarter of the price of those made in Champagne

Tasting Note: Yellow gold in colour with fine mousse this wine features buttered toast, brioche, yeast, lemon tart, cooked apples, Anjou pear, peach, roasted almonds and ginger.

Interesting Point: I saw this sparkling wine at Toronto LCBO at the clearance price and grabbed all 4 bottles.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 8-10 years or pair it with crispy octopus.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Top Pick

Tasted: March 22, 2020

LCBO: 438994

SIMONSIG CHARDONNAY 2017, Stellenbosch, South Africa


Cost: $16.75
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: White Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: South Africa
Region: Stellenbosch
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Simonsig
Alcohol:  13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

A simple Chard, but with elegance and a nice balance between citric fruits & oak

Tasting Note: Bright gold in colour this wine features lemon, red apples, peach, pear, ginger and light oak spice.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with garlic ginger glazed sticky pork.

My Opinion: Recommended

Tasted: March 21, 2020

LCBO: 345389

DELTA ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2017, Marlborough, New Zealand


Cost: $19.95 (Clearance Price: $16.00)
Grape: Chardonnay
Category: White Wine
Location: LCBO Vintages
Country: New Zealand
Region: Marlborough
Format: 750 mL
Producer: Delta Estate
Alcohol:  13.5% Alcohol/Vol.

Nice balances between tropical fruit, citric fruit, oak & creaminess

Tasting Note: Bright gold in colour this wine features lemon, peach, pineapple, mangos, kiwi, dill, ginger, light oak spice and caramel.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with shrimp and scallop Oscar.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: March 20, 2020

LCBO: 149542

13th STREET WINERY CABERNET MERLOT 2018, VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada


Cost: $19.95
Grape: 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot
Category: Red Wine
Location: Winery
Country: Canada
Region: Niagara Peninsula
Format: 750 mL
Producer: 13th Street Winery
Alcohol:  12.5% Alcohol/Vol.

One of the better Ontario Cab/Merlot blends under $20. Smooth with substance & it makes your mouth dance in a good way

Tasting Note: Medium light ruby in colour, light tannin this wine features raspberry, pomegranate, licorice, sage, rosemary, cloves, cinnamon and light cedar.

Pairings: Drink now on its own for the next 3-5 years or pair it with roasted sherry duck.

My Opinion: Highly Recommended

Best Buy

Tasted: March 19, 2020