Top Values at the LCBO (April 2019)

Big Discounts and Delists at the LCBO; updated Top 50
Your Guide to Best Values, Limited Time Offers & Bonus Air Miles selections at the LCBO
– by Steve Thurlow

Steve Thurlow

Steve Thurlow

Eleven wines joined the Top50 Best Values List this month; some with big discounts due to delist by LCBO.

I have chosen thirteen wines to highlight from the list for you. Check out the entire list here. The LCBO continuously monitors the sales of every wine. If those numbers fall below set quotas then the wine is delisted. This makes way for new wines to be added to the selection of approximately 1600 different wines always available from LCBO wines and Vintages Essentials.

Among the 13 wines in today’s report are :

  • Eleven wines discounted for next 4 weeks at the LCBO
  • Large Discounts up to $6.20!
  • Five wines under $12 for an economical April.
  • All 13 wines score 87 or more points.
  • A lovely mature classic Rioja Gran Reserva
  • A Vintages Essential

The current promotional period runs until April 28th. Thanks to WineAlign’s inventory tracking, I can assure you that there were stocks available, when we published, of every wine that I highlight. The delisted wines will disappear quickly so don’t hesitate.

Editor’s Note: You can find our complete critic reviews and inventory by clicking on any of the bottle images or links. 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!


Top Value Reds

Barone Montalto Nero d’Avola Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, Sicily, Italy ($9.45) – New to Top50
A juicy, vibrant, midweight red that is fruity and well structured with soft tannins and lively acidity. Very good length. Well balanced with some fine, dry tannin giving firmness to the finish. Try with pizza and meaty pasta sauces.

Spadafora Terrano Rosso 2017, Calabria, Italy ($9.45) – NewtoTop50
This juicy, well-balanced red is made from the indigenous grape, gaglioppo. Expect plummy fresh aromas of black cherry fruit with no evidence of oak. It is easy drinking and pure with not much complexity or depth, but it is quite yummy. Decent length. Enjoy with burgers.

Big Bill Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Western Cape, South Africa ($10.95 was $12.95)  – NewtoTop50
This is a very classy, well-balanced cabernet which is not as big as the label implies. It has delicate aromas and a midweight palate that is vibrant with lemony acidity for freshness and fine tannin adding to the structure. Very good length. Try with roast meets or meaty pasta sauces.

Barone Montalto Nero D'avola Cabernet Sauvignon 2017   Spadafora Terrano Rosso 2017, Calabria 2017   Big Bill Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Thorn Clarke Grenache Shiraz 2016, Barossa Valley, Australia ($11.95 was $17.95) – Top50 April, Delisted
This is a lovely, finely balanced full-bodied red with a fragrant nose. The palate is thick with dark plum and blackberry fruit but it is finely balanced by soft lemony acidity and mild tannin. Very good length. Try with a steak. Over 900 bottles remain.

Sandeman Late Bottled Vintage Port 2014, Douro Valley, Portugal ($13.40 was $17.45) – New to Top50, Delisted
This full-bodied LBV port always has a delicate nose and palate despite the alcohol (20.5%). Expect a fragrant nose with a palate that is sweet and juicy with ripe black fruit. There is some elegance due to the vibrant acidity. Sip on its own with dark chocolates or with mixed nuts and hard mature cheese. The finish is very smooth. Good to very good length. Over 1300 bottles remain.

Trapiche Pure Black Malbec Unoaked 2017, Mendoza, Argentina ($13.95 was $15.95) – New to Top50
This unoaked opaque purple wine shows has pure blackberry and blueberry fruit aromas with lemon and mild spice notes. It is full-bodied with vibrant acidity and soft fine tannin with very good to excellent length and a fine balance. Try with a steak.

Thorn Clarke Grenache Shiraz 2016   Sandeman Late Bottled Vintage Port 2014   Trapiche Pure Black Malbec Unoaked 2017

Montecillo Reserva Rioja 2012, Spain ($14.90 was $17.90) – New to Top50
This is a classic, mature red that shows complex, fine aromas of currant and cherry fruit with sandalwood spice, and hints of vanilla, prune and tobacco. The elegant palate is mid-weight finely balanced and lively with very good length. Try with grilled lamb cutlets.

Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage Port 2014, Douro Superior, Portugal ($15.95 was $18.45) – New to Top50
A wonderful perfumed nose of blueberry and blackberry fruit with vanilla and black cherry jam greets you. You are enticed to taste and the smooth palate soon beguiles. It’s not super complex but it is so well made with very good length. Finely balanced with no heat from the 20% alcohol.

Santa Carolina Reserva De Familia Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, Alto Maipo Valley, Chile ($17.95 was $19.95) – Top 50 April, VINTAGES Essential
This classic, elegant Chilean cabernet is an opaque purple wine with the aromatic signature of the Maipo valley on the nose. The palate is elegant and deeply flavoured with vibrant, juicy acidity plus some dry tannin underneath and a very even texture. Very good to excellent length.

Bordon Rioja Gran Reserva 2008, Spain ($19.70 was $25.95) – New to Top50, Delisted
This is an elegant, classic mature Rioja with complex aromas of black and red cherry, mild oak spice, with nutty, vanilla and herbal tones. It is mid-weight with lively acidity and very fine tannin. Very good to excellent length. It is drinking fine now and should be good for at least another five to seven years in the cellar. Over 1900 bottles remain.

Montecillo Reserva Rioja 2012   Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage Port 2014   Santa Carolina Reserva De Familia Cabernet Sauvignon 2017   Bordon Rioja Gran Reserva 2008

Top Value Whites

Melini Orvieto Classico 2017, Umbria, Italy ($8.95 was $11.95) – New to Top50
This is a well priced, balanced and very versatile Italian white wine that will accompany a wide range of mildly flavoured seafood, cheesy pasta or white meats, but can equally be enjoyed on its own or with some cheesy nibbles. Expect delicate aromas of pear and melon fruit with a mineral tone and a hint of lemon citrus. The palate is light to mid-weight and dry with the fruit well balanced by acidity. Good to very good length.

Santa Carolina Chardonnay 2018, Rapel Valley, Chile ($9.45) – New to Top50
This simple fruity chardonnay is a lightly oaked with mild aromas of pineapple and pear fruit with some spicy tones. It is mid-weight and quite rich with a lot of flavour for the money. Good length and well- balanced. Try with cheesy pasta sauces, white meats or fish and chips.

Novas Gran Reserva Sauvignon Blanc Organic 2017, San Antonio Valley, Chile ($13.80 was $16.30) – New to Top50
Expect a fresh, crisp nose with lime, green apple and nettles plus some sweet herbal tones. The palate had just enough sweetness to balance the lemony acidity with some nice herbal flavours. Good focus with decent length. Try with seafood or creamy cheese.

Melini Orvieto Classico 2017   Santa Carolina Chardonnay 2018   Novas Gran Reserva Sauvignon Blanc Organic 2017

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

Today’s report pulls best buys from Steve’s Top 50 which is a standing WineAlign list based on quality/price ratio of the 1,600 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.



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

Editor’s Note: You can find our complete critic reviews by clicking on any of the wine 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!