Le Sommelier has three new wines under $25 in the April 15 LCBO Vintages release.

Vineyard Sunset
In this Saturday’s release,
you’ll find three great values wines under $25!

The sun is shining, birds are chirping, spring has sprung! What better way to celebrate all of this than with some pink? Casal de Ventozela is a family owned winery from the Vinho Verde wine producing region of Portugal. These wines are typically refreshing and crisp, with bright and expressive fruit. The 2016 Casal de Ventozela Espadeiro Rosé is made in the traditional style of Vinho Verde wines, where you can expect a slight spritz (which adds freshness to the palate) balanced by a slight hint of residual sugar. It’s a perfect wine for the beautiful sunshine we’ve been experiencing over the last few days. Liven up your summer parties with a Vinho Verde rosé – not something you see all that often in the LCBO – made from an indigenous regional grape called Espadeiro. WineAlign.com’s Sara d’Amato calls this a “a great summertime value” and I would agree – it’s only $13.95!

When was the last time you had a Syrah from Washington’s Columbia Valley? For less than $25, you can say “this weekend!” The 2013 Waterbrook Syrah comes from carefully selected vineyards in Washington’s Columbia Valley. The warmest vintage in a decade, the 2013 growing season cooled off just in time for harvest, and picking proceeded at a normal pace starting at the end of August. Waterbrook Winery was one of the founding wineries in Washington’s Walla Walla Valley back in 1984, and their style remains true to what Washington does best: full bodied, fruit rich wines, with a great breadth of flavours. Look for fruit-forward aromatics of red and black fruit, a spicy and savoury flavours, with soft and approachable tannins which support a lingering finish of fruit, caramelized sugar and spicy. Enjoy this full bodied red with roasted rosemary lamb, pepper-crusted steak, and grilled vegetables. Time to dust off the BBQ!

LCBO VINTAGES is featuring another delicious and great value red from Junta, a young and dynamic winery, run by a team focused on delivering quality wines at affordable prices. All wines are hand-picked from their estate vineyards in Chile’s beautiful Curicó Valley. The Curicó Valley, which starts at the base of the Andes Mountains and extends to the Pacific coast, is alluvial in origin with loam-textured soils that change to deeper clay-loam closer to the coast. Its semi-arid Mediterranean climate enjoys an extended dry season, and the significant different between daytime and nighttime temperatures makes it the perfect climate for lush and fresh red wines. The 2015 Junta Cabernet Sauvignon Momentos Reserve is full-bodied, with juicy red fruit, cassis and earthy tones. It’s uncomplicated but rich in flavour with ripe and silky tannins, making it a great match for grilled meats, or good conversation with friends. Enjoy!

Bernard Stramwasser

Le Sommelier
twitter: @LeSommelierWine
Instagram: @LeSommelierWine

Reviews and Tasting Notes…

Junta Cabernet Sauvignon Momentos Reserve 2015

The Curicó Valley is where the iconic Spanish winemaker Miguel Torres began his exploration of fine winemaking in Chile in 1979. The region stretches from the Andes to the Pacific, and it experiences a wide range of climatic influences – which is, in part, why it’s home to the greatest diversity of varieties in Chile. Cabernet Sauvignon does very well here as this 2015 demonstrates, with its smoky, ripe and juicy red fruit, cassis and earthy tones. Enjoy with grilled lamb. (VINTAGES panel, July 2016)


A rich, earthy and hearty red, bold and ambitious but with carefully managed use of oak. Commercial in nature but with more complexity than expected. A touch of meaty brett and astringency are notable on the finish and distract somewhat from the otherwise affable nature of the wine. Tasted March 2017.”

(Sara d’Amato, WineAlign.com, April 13, 2017)

Varietal: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Region: Curicó Valley, Chile
Price: $16.95 (per bottle)
LCBO #485300

Waterbrook Syrah 2013

Aromatics of tanned leather, black currants and pepper are backed by a brush of mint. Medium-heavy with silky smooth tannins, this Syrah finishes with ripe black fruits and floral notes, complemented by sweet oak.


A ripe, iron-rich style of syrah. Both black and red fruit are represented on the dry and savory palate of substantial weight. Oak is notable but not obtrusive. Full bodied and fleshy with velvety tannins that make the wine accessible. Very good depth of flavour and length. Tasted April 2017.”

(Sara d’Amato, WineAlign.com, April 13, 2017)

Varietal: 100% Syrah
Region: Columbia Valley, Washington
Price: $24.95 (per bottle)
LCBO #70607

Casal de Ventozela Espadeiro Rosé Vinho Verde 2016


“What espadeiro can be with dry, saline and light citrus style, like melon de bourgogne but with more herbs, lactic notes and a little fizz. Just a pin-prick mind you and in the name of energy and fun. You’d never confuse this with the south of France but from Vinho Verde it will more than suffice, with the help of a big chill outdoors in the warm, spring sun. Drink 2017-2018. Tasted March 2017.”

(Michael Godel, WineAlign.com, April 6, 2017)

“A bright, vibrant, peppy rosé with good concentration, depth of flavour and just a hint of spritz which is not uncommon for Vinho Verde. An appealing rosé, fruity but not too sweet with a notes of crunchy sea salt that adds class. A great summertime value. Tasted March 2017.”

(Sara d’Amato, WineAlign.com, April 13, 2017)

Varietal: 100% Espadeiro
Region: Minho, Portugal
Price: $13.95 (per bottle)
LCBO #450841

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