Five Exciting New Wines at LCBO Vintages
The Ontario liquor giant releases small batches of wines in its Vintages section almost every two weeks. But it’s hard to keep up with these new releases let alone know which bottles are the best. So, to get you up to speed, here are five wines that hit shelves on May 21, each of them well worth your hard-earned cash. Take them though. They won’t last.
For something pink and sophisticated, consider the 2021 Saint Aix Rosé AP Coteaux d’Aix en Provence from France (Vintage $24.95). It shines in a gorgeous pale rose gold hue and exudes wispy notes of apricot and lilac, strawberry and cherry. The attack is fresh, fresh and precise with a chiseled minerality marking the fruity and floral center while the plunging acidity anchors each sip. A pleasantly bitter touch of grapefruit leaves the palate seasoned and clean. Rating: 90
Pour this elegant Provençal expression over poached salmon or bistro-style goat cheese salad.
Those who gravitate towards the velvety, sunny reds of California wine will appreciate the 2019 Michael David Freakshow Zinfandel from Lodi (Vintage $28.95). It’s rich, jammy and lush without losing that all-important drinkability factor. On the nose, the muddled berries smell sweet and inviting before the wine thunders with a sip of sweet, ripe wild berry goodness laced with milk chocolate, toasted almonds, sweet oak and cherry-vanilla. This swirling complexity is generous and inviting before a slow black coffee and tobacco finish takes over. Easy fun. Rating: 92
Serve this wine in a cocktail with a handful of nuts or on the barbecue with all those charred, sweet and smoky morsels.
Beaujolais cru lovers will want to taste the 2019 Georges Duboeuf Domaine Mont Chavy Morgon AOC, France (Vintage $22.95). The Beaujolais cru originates from one of the top 10 growing regions, or crus, in the Beaujolais region of Burgundy – in this case, Morgon. It’s a style that can be underrated, which is certainly the case here.
Each glass opens with rich scents of black cherry and cassis liqueur intertwined with licorice, violets, fresh chalk and cedar – a captivating scent. The languorous entry seems lifted, graceful. But this balance veils a firm musculature. Each sip of this full-bodied red cascades into muscular flavors of iron-strung black forest fruit, clove, black earth, hot embers and black olive before lingering on the finish. Rating: 91
If you are a meat eater and enjoy a steak with deep cooking, this bottle is the perfect match.
Notice to white wine lovers: The 2020 Fontanafredda Pradalupo Roero Arneis DOCG (Vintages $18.95) is an immediately appealing bottle from Piedmont, Italy. Made from the native and increasingly respected Arneis grape, this gem shines bright and clear while giving off aromas of sliced pear with a hint of honeyed walnut. The attack radiates with linear intent, with a dry, bright and lively taste at the start. Then it quickly expands to reveal a more complex and textured expression. Fresh pear reveals white flowers, olive brine and bergamot while an attractive grip holds the fruit in place as it tapers to a long, slightly flinty finish. Pure charm. Rating: 91
Serve this wine with antipasti when company turns up for impromptu but elegant receptions.
The bottle of champagne to buy is the NV Laurent Perrier La Cuvée Brut Champagne from France (Vintage $69.95). It’s a classic blend of chardonnay and pinot noir with a hint of pinot meunier that draws you in with the scent of caramelized apples, buttery pastry and lemon curd. These aromas resonate on the palate while lively effervescence and creamy foam deliver the delicacy, purity and finesse you expect from a bottle of fine champagne. Rating: 91
Pour this French bubbly with a plate of oysters or a batch of gougères – those airy French cheese puffs. Magic.
These wines are the ultimate for the Victoria Day long weekend – or whenever you want to treat yourself.