Top Values at the LCBO (June 2017)

Your Guide to Best Values, Limited Time Offers & Bonus Air Miles selections at the LCBO
by Steve Thurlow

Steve Thurlow

Steve Thurlow

June is a great period for value shopping at LCBO with many deep discounts and two delists. Twelve wines joined my Top 50 Best Values List. You have just under 4 weeks to take advantage of these prices. Don’t hesitate, since some of the delisted wines on the Top50 will sell out, no doubt, in the next couple of weeks.

I have updated my Top50 list and have selected twelve wines to highlight for you off the new list, all of which joined the list this month.

Among the wines in today’s report about the new Top50 there are:

  • Ten wines heavily discounted; one by over $4
  • All 12 wines score 87 or more points
  • Two VINTAGES Essentials
  • Seven wines for less than $12
  • A new white from South Africa that jumps straight onto the Top50 list for $8.25.

The current promotional period runs until July 16th, so don’t hesitate. Thanks to WineAlign’s inventory tracking, I can assure you that there were stocks available, when we published, of every wine that I highlight. However there are two delisted wine that will soon be gone.

Top Value Reds

Aliança Bairrada Reserva 2015, Bairrada, Portugal ($8.95) New to Top50 – 2015 is a good vintage for this red wine from the Bairrada region in Portugal made from the grape baga. A fragrant nose leads to a lively, juicy palate with a fine balance and very good length. It finishes dry with firm tannin. Try with roast meats or creamy cheese like brie. 

Dan Aykroyd Cabernet Merlot 2014, VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario ($11.75 was $15.95) Delisted – This is a clean juicy well balanced red blend with a good depth of flavour and a fine structure. Expect aromas of red and black cherry fruit with some earthy and herbal notes. The fruit is ripe but not overripe with fine balancing acidity and dry fruity tannic finish. Try with a steak. Over 700 bottles remain.

Aliança Bairrada Reserva 2015Dan Aykroyd Cabernet Merlot 2014Bolla Valpolicella Classico 2015Casillero del Diablo Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Bolla Valpolicella Classico 2015, Veneto, Italy ($11.95 was $13.95) New to Top50 – This is a beautiful lightweight fruity Valpolicella, that should appeal to fans of pinot noir with its pale ruby colour, firm dry finish and soft fruity palate. It is lightweight to medium bodied with soft dry fruit, well balanced with good to very good length. Try with pizza or tomato based sauces.

Casillero del Diablo Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Central Valley, Chile ($11.95 was $13.95) New to Top50 – There is quite a lot of complexity and some elegance for a wine at this price, with its fragrant nose and soft dry palate with the fruit balanced by tannin and some lemony acidity and very good length.

Thelema Mountain Red 2014, Western Cape, South Africa ($13.65 + 8BAMs) NewtoTop50 – This fresh red blend of shiraz and five other grapes comes from high mountain vineyards above Stellenbosch. The fragrant nose leads to a very smooth palate that is quite dense and nicely balanced. Try with pizza or burgers.

Jacob’s Creek Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, Coonawarra, South Australia ($14.15 was $17.15) New to Top50 – This is a well made complex cabernet that is a good cellar candidate since it will age well for the next 3-4 years, though it is drinking well now with a steak. It is full bodied with lots of flavour and is finely balanced with fine tannin and juicy acidity.

Thelema Mountain Red 2014Jacob's Creek Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2014Wolf Blass Yellow Label Shiraz 2015Porcupine Ridge Syrah 2016

Wolf Blass Yellow Label Shiraz 2015, South Australia ($14.15 was $17.15) New to Top50 – This is a lively midweight fresh youthful shiraz that is well balanced with some fresh floral and menthol notes on the nose. The fruity palate is so nicely balanced by some lemony acidity and licorice that tones down the ripe blackberry fruit. Good to very good length.

Porcupine Ridge Syrah 2016, Swartland, South Africa ($14.45 was $15.95) New to Top50 – VINTAGES Essential – This perennial favourite shows a lot of ripe fruit without being jammy or overpowering. It is full bodied and very creamy on the palate with lively acidity and peppery, spicy, ripe fruit. It is well balanced with a fine finish.

Top Value Whites

Gato Negro 9 Lives Chardonnay Semillon 2015 Chile ($7.95 was $11.00) Delisted – A clean flavourful rich dry white with a good depth of flavour. Focus is well maintained onto a long lingering finish. Very good length. Chill lightly and enjoy with creamy pasta sauces, roast chicken or veal. Around 500 bottles left.

Robertson Winery Chenin Blanc 2016, Robertson, South Africa ($8.25) New to Top50 – There is a lot going on for the money here. It is juicy and fruity and quite fat with a fine balance and good to very good length. Having a dozen on hand this summer for alfresco dining with seafood and chicken seems a great idea. This is an online exclusive offer. The wine is only available by the case of 12 for $99.00 at

Gato Negro 9 Lives Chardonnay Semillon 2015Robertson Winery Chenin Blanc 2016Lindemans Bin 65 Chardonnay 2016Astrolabe Province Sauvignon Blanc 2015

Lindemans Bin 65 Chardonnay 2016, Southeastern Australia ($9.60 was $11.10) New to Top50 – This is a soft tropical fruit flavoured Aussie chard with a perfumed vanilla and oak spice elaborated nose. It is midweight and juicy with the fruit balanced by acidity. Quite harmonious. Nicely done for the money. Try with fish and chips.

Astrolabe Province Sauvignon Blanc 2015, Marlborough, New Zealand ($19.95 was $22.95)  New to Top50 VINTAGES Essential – This is a lively fresh wine with a complex nose and palate, which is juicy, rich and intensely fruity. There is a sweet herbal and floral tone to the apple and guava fruit aromas with a touch of peppermint and asparagus. Good focus and very good length.

How does a wine get selected for the Top Value Report:

Steve's Top 50 Value WinesToday’s report pulls best buys from Steve’s Top 50 which is a standing WineAlign list based on quality/price ratio of the 1600 or so wines in LCBO Wines and the VINTAGES Essentials Collection. 

There are three ways that a wine gets into this monthly report of wines that are always in the stores either on the LCBO “General List” or the VINTAGES Essential Collection. (You can access these lists under the Wine tab on WineAlign.)

• On Sale (LTO’s or Limited Time Offers): Every four weeks the LCBO discounts around 200 wines I have looked through the current batch and have highlighted some of my favourites that offer better value at present…. so stock up now.

Bonus Air Miles (BAM’s): If you collect Air Miles then you will be getting Bonus Air Miles on another 150 or so wines…a few of these have a special appeal for a while.

• Steve’s Top 50: Wines that have moved onto my Top 50 Best Values this month. This is on an-on going WineAlign selection that mathematically calculates value by comparing the price and rating of all the wines on the LCBO General List. The Top 50 changes all the time, so remember to check before shopping.

I will be back next month with more news on value arrivals to Essentials and the LCBO.


Steve Thurlow

Top 50 Value Wines
Wines on Limited Time Offer
Wines with Bonus Air Miles

Editors Note: You can find our complete critic reviews by clicking on any of the wine names, bottle images or links highlighted. Paid subscribers to WineAlign see all critic reviews immediately. Non-paid users wait 30 days to see new reviews. Membership has its privileges; like first access to great value wines!


Mazzei Belguardo Serrata 2014