Top Values at the LCBO (July 2019)

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

Steve Thurlow

Steve Thurlow

I am just back from a week in Scotland doing research for a future whisky/golf tour and savouring some wonderful single malts. Single malt scotch whisky, like wine, is very complex and each one is unique. It expresses its origin like fine wines that show terroir.

When I ran the program that creates the new Top50 list I found some heavily discounted wines from New Zealand, Chile and Australia. Ten wines joined the Top 50 list this month. Most are on discount for the next month and the others, that joined, were tasted by me recently. I also write about some wines that were already on the Top50 that are better than usual value due to discounts (LTO) or Bonus AirMiles (BAMs). I have selected twelve wines to highlight from my Top50 Best Values List .

Among the wines in today’s report about the Top50:

  • Ten wines joined the Top50 this month
  • Some big discounts
  • One lovely structured cabernet from Chile for $15.95
  • Two delicious, mouthwatering sauvignon blancs from New Zealand for $13.95
  • 10 wines score 88 or more points
  • Two Vintages Essentials
  • One VQA wines

The current promotional period runs until July 21st, 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.


Top Value Reds

Pasqua Merlot 2017 Veneto, Italy (1500ml) ($14.55 + 9 BAMs) – Top50 July
This is a pure lively light to midweight merlot with aromas of raspberry and cherry fruit with some floral and herbal tones. It is dry and well balanced with a lingering dry finish. A versatile food wine for by- the-glass service. Try with pizza and meaty and cheesy pasta dishes. Good length.

Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Colchagua Valley, Chile ($15.95 was $19.95) – New to Top50, Vintages Essential
Expect aromas of pure cassis and blackberry fruit with mint and eucalyptus plus some dark chocolate tones and mild well integrated oak spice. It is pure, vibrant and fresh with good focus with fine tongue tickling tannins. It is well balanced and juicy with very good length. Some bottle age will help with integration. Best 2020 to 2025.

Cesari Mara Valpolicella Ripasso 2016, Veneto, Italy ($16.95 was $19.95) – New to Top50
This is a fine well made ripasso which is lighter than most with a fine balance and some elegance. Expect aromas of red and black cherry fruit with some spice and floral notes. It is full bodied but feels lighter. Very good length. Mild tannin and soft balancing acidity make it very drinkable. Try with roast meats.

Top Value Whites

Bacalhoa J P Azeitao Branco 2017, Peninsula De Setubal, Portugal ($8.95) – New to Top50
An inexpensive fruity white with a good depth of flavour and pleasing zesty apple pear aromas. It is light to midweight and well balanced with good length. A versatile white for sipping or enjoying with seafood and mildly flavored pork and chicken dishes.

La Vieille Ferme Côtes Du Luberon 2018, Rhone Valley, France ($11.00 was $12.50) – New to Top50
This is a rich lively white with a nose that shows pineapple and ripe apple fruit with some tropical notes. It is mid-weight, well balanced and very smooth with grapefruit pith bitterness on the finish to close it nicely. A good all round white for poultry, veal or pork. Very good length and balance.

Honoro Vera 2017, Rueda, Spain ($11.95) – New to Top50
The verdejo grape is used to make a fresh yet rich white wine that shows tropical fruit notes with apricot, peach plus some banana hints. The well balanced palate is dense and smooth with good focus and very good length. Chill and enjoy with pork and veal dishes.

Jacob’s Creek Chardonnay Reserve 2018, Adelaide Hills, South Australia ($12.00 was $15.00) – New to Top50
This is new style Aussie chardonnay, fresher, crisper and with less oak. There is some oak on the nose but it is the lime, melon and green peach fruit that is most evident. The palate is bright and lively, midweight with good focus on to the finish. Very good length. Try with seafood or mildly flavoured poultry. Very classy.

Casas Del Bosque Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2018, Casablanca Valley, Chile ($12.95 was $14.95) – New to Top50, Vintages Essential
This is a typical Casablanca sauvignon with a fine nose of lemon, passion fruit, green apple and grapefruit with some dry hay tones. It is fresh and lively with a creamy palate with lots of mouthwatering acidity and soft ripe fruit. Very good length. Try with creamy goats cheese or mildly flavoured seafood. Very good length.

Segura Viudas Brut Reserva Cava, Spain ($13.95 was $15.95) – New to Top50
This is a lovely bubbly that great for receptions as an aperitif and is much improved since my previous tasting a year ago. Expect a fresh nose of grapefruit, mineral and pear with an elegant delicate soft mousse and a long lingering finish of apple pear fruit. Lots of flavour and super creamy texture. Very good length.

Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc 2018, Marlborough, New Zealand ($17.95) – Top50 July
This is a lovely very typical Marlborough sauvignon with a creamy palate with lots of mouthwatering grapefruit acidity. It is light on the palate and complex in aroma. Expect fresh guava, hay and lime with herbal and celery tones and a hint of warm spice. It is very juicy with ripe fruit and fresh crisp acidity. Very well balanced with very good to excellent length. Try with seafood and lightly flavoured poultry.

Trius Dry Riesling 2017, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario ($13.95 was $14.95) – New to Top50
This is a delicate fine wine with good extraction and balance with aromas of pear and melon with mineral and floral complexity. The palate is dry with a good depth of flavour and very good to excellent length. It is elegant and stately with a zesty finish. Try with cheesy sauces, sauteed seafood or white meats.

The Ned Sauvignon Blanc 2018, Marlborough, New Zealand ($13.95 was $16.95) – New to Top50
This is a delicately flavoured sauvignon with typical Marlborough guava, lemongrass and grapefruit aromas and flavours with sweet herbal and dry hay complexity on the nose. Mouthwatering acidity is well balanced with just enough sweetness and the finish is graceful with very good length. Try with sautéed seafood or creamy cheese.

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!