Stocking up on wines for Canada Day!

This LCBO Vintages release for Saturday June 27 focuses on Flagship ISD (in store discoveries), Canada Day, and the Pan Am Toronto Games games. I was wondering what the term “flagship” meant and still do not have a definitive answer.

LCBO-Vintages-Magazine-June-27-224x300However, having just returned from working in the UAE, I think of “flagship” similarly to a city like Dubai. It’s about the biggest, the best, the shiniest, the most opulent, the tallest, definitely the most expensive etc. So I will sum it up by saying that the LCBO has likely identified Flagship ISD wines as those that are pretty good and leave it at that.

July is my favorite month and this tantalizing new releases reminds me of what I am going to enjoy on my balcony with my husband and friends. I just can’t wait to shop in my favorite store, especially when Canada Day is around the corner. I buy mostly Canadian wines since I believe we have a fabulous selection, so cannot apologize for the mostly Canadian content below. There’s just no place like home so let’s celebrate; Oh Caaanaaadaaaa…..

Accredited Sommelier Julie Stock

If I had $100, I would buy these wines at LCBO Vintages…

Featherstone Sauvignon Blanc 2013

Featherstone-Sauvignon-Blanc-225x300VQA Niagara on the Lake
$17.95 (Vintages # 089011) 12% alcohol

Solid fruit aromas emanate from this lovely pale coloured white wine that just breathes summer. It’s delicate but has lots of backbone, great acidity and fabulous grass and grapefruit flavours. Lots of depth and expression, and I may have found my new favourite Sauv. Blanc. It has a racy, crisp finish that make it a great sipper on its own or with a wide range of summer salads and pasta.


Calamus Steely Unoaked Chardonnay 2013

VQA Niagara Peninsula
$14.95 (Vintages #210062) 12.5% alcohol

If you could blend a little sunshine with tangerines it might describe the aromas in this lovely white wine. Pale in colour for a Chardonnay, it comes by its name honestly since there are definite crisp steely notes with an abundance of tropical fruit flavours. It’s clean tasting and very fresh, nothing cloying about this Chardonnay, medium bodied with citrus aftertastes. At this price point, don’t miss out, it’s a great Niagara find that won’t last long on the shelves. With some grilled salmon or chicken and veggies it would be a lovely summer dinner.


13th Street White Palette 2012

VQA Niagara Peninsula13th-Street-White-Palette
$15.95 (Vintages #207340) 12% alcohol

It’s impossible to go wrong with a blend of Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Gewurtztraminer and Chardonnay Musqué; talk about bringing the best of each grape varietal forward. Super fragrant and another incredible price point for the complexity of fruit flavours. A delicate blend of cantaloupe, tangerine and lemon tea almost a hint of residual sugar no doubt from the Gewurtztraminer, but bone dry, fresh and delicious. This is one of those wines that slips down very easily so don’t hesitate to stock up while supplies last. Proud to be on any dinner table for lighter summer fare. It’s as dazzling as the winery it comes from, an art gallery of fine wines nestled in a forest setting with slopping hills. 13th Street never disappoints.


Thirty Bench Small Lot Rosé 2014

Thirty-Bench-Small-Lot-Riesling-225x300VQA Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula
$22.20 (Vintages #414227) 12.7% alcohol

So aromatic of red roses and only 466 cases of this made so you may not want to line up but this won’t last long. Intense rhubarb and raspberry flavours dance on the palate, great acidity with a slightly off dry taste on the crisp finish. It’s a elegant and refined rosé, that is great on its own or with some grilled seafood, delicious and yummy says it all.


Montes Alpha Carmenere 2012

Colchagua Valley, ChileMontes-Alph-Carmenere-225x300
$19.95 (Vintages #143230) 14.3% alcohol

I thought I should at least put another country in my $100 basket so this is it. A powerful Carmenère for those steak nights or when mixed grill is on the menu. Intense dark purple, with aromas of plums and blueberries, blackberries that carry onto the palate. A Smooth red wine with medium tannins resulting in full bodied lusciousness. Some dusty earth tones on the subtle dark fruit finish. Oh man, it’s good.

So call on some friends, heat up the barbeque, pick up some shrimps and sirloin, accompanied by some if not all the above, wave our flag, sing our anthem and that sounds like my kind of Canada Day.

Grand Total:  $91.50     

P.S. I left you enough to buy some Canadian cheeses too!