Three LCBO stores with rare wines from Greece, Spain and Portugal

Three LCBO stores with rare wines from Greece, Spain and Portugal

Think of them as pop-ups for Old World enthusiasts

Ever so slowly, our provincial liquor stores are innovating—most recently via widely expanded regional sections in a handful of locations. A Greek wine specialty section is nestled in the Broadview and Danforth shop, a Portuguese-focused store is tucked into the Stockyards on St. Clair West, and a broad Spanish section launched at the end of September at the LCBO at Bloor and Royal York. These locations all carry the same general list and Vintages selections as other LCBO shops, plus 40 to 60 additional labels from their region of focus. This is a great new service for lovers of old-world wines—and these delicious Greek, Portuguese and Spanish reds are all excellent bottles you’ve likely never tasted.

Euro Vision: Greece
Thessalia, Greece
Domaine Katsaros 2013 Valos
$28.50 | 92 points

This elegant young charmer comes from low on the eastern slopes of Mount Olympus. It has floral, cranberry and blueberry scents, plus gentle spice. The xinomavro grape’s infamous tannins set up a dry, dusty screen, but the sweet fruit and wet stone minerality seep through to excellent length. Best 2016 to 2020. 200 Danforth Ave. LCBO 15121

Euro Vision: Greece
Nemea, Greece
Skouras 2012 Saint George Aghiorghitiko
$18.75 | 89 points

This is a modern, mid-weight, easy-drinking red made from the agiorgitiko grape, which is grown in the Nemea region. You’ll taste floral peony, candied strawberry and cherry fruit, with subtle wild herbs and coniferous notes. Soft tannins render this wine smooth, but it still has nice lift from the sour berry acidity. 200 Danforth Ave. LCBO 128321

Euro Vision: Portugal
Dão, Portugal
Casa Anadia 2013
$22.25 | 90 points

From an 18th-century estate among the forested hills of Dão in central Portugal comes this lively red with its wild berry fruit, fresh basil-like herbs and vaguely meaty aromas. It’s mid-weight, smooth yet juicy, with dry, soft tannin and a savoury, earthy finish. 2151 St. Clair Ave. W. LCBO 941012

Euro Vision: Portugal
Douro Valley, Portugal
Niepoort 2013 Diálogo
$15.45 | 89 Points

The Douro Valley is famous for its port, but some forward-thinking producers, like Diálogo, are making excellent bargain reds. This bottle combines sour red plum fruit, and herbal and mineral energy with textural refinement. It’s mid-weight, with fine tannin and a tart-edged finish. Chill a little. 2151 St. Clair Ave. W. LCBO 914613

Euro Vision: Spain
Toro, Spain
Yaso 2012 Tinta de Toro
$22.95 | 88 Points

This full, smooth and juicy red is from the arid, high country along the banks of the Duero River near the town of Toro. It shows lifted, very ripe floral plummy aromas with thyme, vanilla and iron-like earthiness. 2946 Bloor St. W. LCBO 377499

Euro Vision: Spain
Rioja, Spain
Valdemar 2010 Inspiración Selección
$19.95 | 90 Points

Ten months of oak aging has infused this traditional Rioja with complex meaty, black licorice, cedar, vanilla and prune aromas and flavours. It’s dense, tense and well-structured, and will only improve with age. Lots here for $20. 2946 Bloor St. W. LCBO 166512

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