november-28-2015-vintages-catalogueNovember 28, 2015 – Ottawa, Ontario.

Leading into the holiday season is one of the best times of the year for high end wine availability as retailers stock their shelves with premium products so that consumers can find those unique and iconic wines whether for gifting purposes or to make their own holiday celebrations that much more special.  The LCBO/Vintages November 28th release is packed full of high end wines, including many iconic wines from Italy and California.


I recently tasted the wines shown below and I’d highly recommend checking them out this holiday season if you’re in the market for high quality, high price, storied wines.  If you do decide to make the investment then don’t wait too long after these wines are release as they’ll likely be scooped up by keen shoppers that have been eagerly awaiting their arrival on LCBO/Vintages shelves – hopeful that they’ll land a few of these for their own holiday gifting and enjoyment purposes.

And remember, it’s never too early to start picking-up wines for the holidays.  The sooner you do the more likely you’ll get the wines you want, and without the long line-ups that are so common in shopping centres throughout December.

Enjoy and happy holidays!




Cloudy Bay Chardonnay 2013 – equally impressive as their iconic Sauvignon Blanc – a must try! $35.95 – worth a try!

Wow!  Suberb flinty minerality, orchard fruit, herbal notes, crisp and refreshing.  Incredible Chardonnay!  Well worth the investment.  Tasted November 2015. 93+ points. Matt Steeves –

Iconic New Zealand Cloudy Bay Chardonnay Available at LCBO

Guado al Tasso 2012 – $104.95 via LCBO/Vintages

Guado al Tasso estate is loaced in the center of the so-called “Bolgheri amphitheater” near the famous Super Tuscan producing region of Bolgheri on the Tuscan coast. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (55%), Merlot (25%), Cabernet Franc (18%) with a splash of Petit Verdot (2%), this iconic Tuscan gem boasts layers of dark berry fruit, plum, mint, leather, graphite, and cedar on the nose and palate. One of the most impressive (iconic) Super Tuscan’s I’ve tasted recently. A fantastic wine that is showing beautifully now and will continue to for decades to come. At ~$100 this iconic Super Tuscan offers incredible value. Tasted November 2015. 96+ points. Matt Steeves

Antinori’s Guado al Tasso availability at LCBO

Solaia 2011 – $249.95 via LCBO/Vintages

This could be one of the finest wines you’ll ever taste. Deep ruby in colour, with a blackish core, this is a deep and robust wine. The nose shows luscious raisin, fig, and prune, baking spice, dried herbs, the sweet fruit reminiscent of fine port. Such depth and complexity in this Super Tuscan. Incredible layers of dried fruits, vanilla, baking spices, herbs, and black liquorice, the list goes on and on, like the never ending heart warming finish. Soft and well structured, it’s beautiful now and I can only imagine what it can evolve to in the years to come. 96 points. Tasted March 2015. Matt Steeves –

Iconic Super Tuscan Solaia availability at LCBO

LUCE 2012 – $114.95 via LCBO/Vintages

A ripe, thick and juicy Super Tuscan, dark ruby, opaque, the dark fruit, dried plum and fig, layers upon layers, this is a terrific vintage of Luce! Tasted November 2015. 94 points. Matt Steeves –

Super Tuscan Luce 2010 availability at LCBO

Silver Oak 2010 – $159.95 via LCBO/Vintages

Silver Oak 2010 shows notes of sweet baking spice, mocha, herbs, leather, and pepper. The palate is rich and robust with black fruit, mocha, plum, and white pepper. Very nice effort, drinking well now and will evolve further over the next 10-20 years. Tasted June & November 2015, 93 points. Matt Steeves –

Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon availability at LCBO

$299.95 via LCBO/Vintages.  Also available in magnum format for $620.00

Iconic Napa Valley winemaker and winery, Joseph Phelps’ 2012 Insignia is a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot, 10% Merlot, 3% Malbec and 2% Cabernet Franc, each aged 24 months in new French oak. Deep and opaque, the nose is rich and layered with kirsch, a medley of field berry, liquorice, tar, sweet baking spice, and cedar. Full bodied, rich and concentrated, the dry, refreshing, and textured palate is well structured and perfectly suited to long term cellaring. Decant two hours if you insist on enjoying before 2018, and drink over the next two decades. Tasted November 2015. 94 points. Matt Steeves –

Sassicaia $199.95

Iconic Super Tuscan, Sassicaia from D.O.C. Bolgheri Sassicaia, has had a cult like following since 1974 when a six year old vintage of Sassicaia beat an assortment of Bordeaux in a Decanter competition. Since then fine wine lovers around the world have made place in their cellars for this incredible Italian (Bordeaux blend) wine. The 2012 shows cedar, concentrated black berry, tea leaves, raspberry, and balsamic notes. Meaty texture with layers of dark fruit, mouth coating fine tannins, it’s dry with more black tea, balsamic notes, and cedar on the palate. A very well structured and perfectly balanced Super Tuscan! Enjoy 2018-2038+. Tasted November 2015. 95+ points. Matt Steeves –

Sassicaia 2012 – Availability at LCBO/Vintages

Far Niente Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon – $218.95 via LCBO/Vintages

Deep and richly concentrated, this fine Oakville Cabernet from the storied Far Niente winery. Founded in 1885, Far Niente, took a breather in 1919 with the onset of Prohibition, and only got things back and running sixity years later. The 2012 vintage shows super concentrated dark berries, with prominent graphite notes. Very impressive wine. Tasted November 2015. 93 points. Matt Steeves –

Far Niente Availability via LCBO/Vintages

Masi’s Valo Amaron Amarone – $69.95 via LCBO/Vintages

Deep ruby red, almost black in colour, the nose screams black currant, plum, fig, sweet spice, and menthol. A huge wine in every way! Bold dark berry, dried plum, fig, and charcoal on the palate. Intensity in aromas and flavour, this is a stellar Amarone. Highly recommended! Tasted November 2015. 94 points. Matt Steeves –

Masi’s Amaron Amarone Availability via LCBO/Vintages

$28.95 via LCBO/Vintages

Rich ruby red, this beautiful Barbera D’Asti shows subtle prune, blackberry, plum, licorice, tar, mocha, and cured meat on the nose. Medium-full bodied, the palate displays refreshing dark berries, sour cherry, licorice with a touch of grilled herbs. At 15% abv, this is a big wine that would pair wonderfully with braised dishes, rich mushroom risotto, or wood fired pizza with spicy sausage, peppers, and mushrooms. Tasted November 2015. 91 points. Matt Steeves –

Olim Bauda Le Rocchette availability at LCBO/Vintages

$195.95 (750ml), $103.95 (375ml) via LCBO/Vintages

Wow! Deep ruby, with an opaque centre, the 2012 Ornellaia shows the perfect balance of sweet fruit, savoury traits, rich texture, structure, and overall balance. Concentrated dark fruit, cacao, espresso, leather, spice, it’s jam packed with an obundance of fine tannins. The winemaker achieve beautiful balance in this iconic wine. Ideal with wide range of Tuscan dishes, especially thick cut bistecca alla fiorentina (steaks). It’s elegant, structured, and built to be cellared and enjoyed over the next few decades. Tasted November 2015. 95 points. Matt Steeves –

375ml Ornellaia Availability at LCBO/Vintages

Iconic Kistler Chardonnay – $99.95

Rich gold colour, an elegant balance of tree fruit, sweet spices, delicate oak, and nutty characteristics. Gorgeous wine! Full bodied, it’s a perfect balance of rich fruit, nuttiness, light toast, and elegance! Enjoy with seared scallops and rich risotto. Tasted November 2015. 94 points. Matt Steeves –

Kistler Les Noisetiers Chardonnay availability at LCBO/Vintages

Shafer Red Shoulder Ranch Napa Valley Chardonnay – $76.95 via LCBO/Vintages

Ripe pineapple, orchard fruit, honeydew melon, beautifully balanced. Lovely full bodied Napa Valley Chardonnay from the Red Shoulder Ranch of Shafer Vineyards. Tasted November 2015. 92 points. Matt Steeves –

Shafer Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay availability at LCBO/Vintages

For anyone whom loves Canadian Icewine, this iconic producer’s 40th anniversary release would be an incredible trophy wine to display in your cellar, or to enjoy over the holiday season.

In the four decades since its inception, Inniskillin’s iconic Icewine has reigned supreme, gaining wide appeal in over 80 countries.

This ultra-premium anniversary edition Riesling Icewine was crafted by Inniskillin winemaker Bruce Nicholson with grapes from their prestigious Pratt Vineyard. Very limited production, each bottle is individually numbered and signed by Nicholson.  It comes complete with a fancy crystal stopper.

Inniskillin’s 40th Anniversary Limited Edition Riesling Icewine – $500 winery direct (sold out via

See more via Vintages