The best new bottles at the LCBO in August

The best new bottles at the LCBO in August

Toronto Life Wine Club

The LCBO is constantly adding new products to its shelves. We tasted our way through the new releases and put together a guide to the best new booze of the month. Here’s what to look for on store shelves in August.


Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin

$56.80 | Ireland
Infused with gunpowder tea—green tea dried and rolled into shiny pellets—this robust gin needs only a bit of tonic and ice. LCBO 635508

Signal Hill Canadian Whiskey

$39.95 | Newfoundland
There’s no rye in this Canadian whiskey that’s 95 per cent corn and five per cent barley, but its absence makes for a very smooth-sipping expression. LCBO 572552


Gaston Chiquet Tradition 1er Cru Brut Champagne

$54.95 | France
This bottle notably delivers all the highlights of a more expensive champagne—biscuit and apple notes, with lemon, lime and a real punch of refreshing and cleansing acidity—for under $60. Vintages 665851


2016 Stephane Aviron Vieilles Vignes Moulin à Vent

$23.95 | France
Wines from Moulin-à-Vent are some of the most age-worthy of all the Beaujolais crus. But for those who lack patience for cellaring, this rich, concentrated wine is ready to drink now. Vintages 368134

2016 Martin Ray Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

$44.95 | California
A well-layered sipper offering big California fruit with smoky and mocha undertones, plus hints of leather and rich tannins.
Vintages 10044

2014 Spier 21 Gables Cabernet Sauvignon

$39.95 | South Africa
A future-enjoyment wine that’s currently displaying dusty and cocoa-like tannins, with dark, dense fruit and smokey, leathery notes. Give it five years to mellow. Vintages 651810

2016 Banfi Rosso Poggio Alle Mura

$28.95 | Italy
A terrific value, made from 100 per cent sangiovese grapes that didn’t quite make the grade for the single-vineyard Brunello. It’s soft and round with supple fruit on the tongue, plus red and dark berries, licorice, spice and a good acid punch, with a cran-cherry-balsamic hit on the finish. Vintages 644997

2017 Thirty Bench Winemaker’s Blend Red

$24.95 | Ontario
It’s the 50-50 split of American and French oak that gives this wine its round and rich fruit flavours, while maintaining a little finesse: there are hints of vanilla, blackcurrant, cocoa, black cherry and tobacco. Vintages 320986

2015 Westmount Pinot Noir

$19.95 | Oregon
Oregon pinot is popular and usually expensive, but here’s one you can finally hop on the bandwagon with without paying an arm and a leg. Vintages 010704

2017 Herdade Sao Miguel Colheita Seleccionada Tinto

$17.95 | Portugal
Full-bodied, but not overrun by jammy fruit thanks to ample acidity. Perfect for a late summer barbecue, and a steal for under $20. Vintages 070730

2016 Domaine du Grapillon D’or Gigondas

$34.95 | France
The epitome of Rhone: lots of dark fruit—blackberry, black cherry, plum—with hints of licorice, mocha and some minerality for good measure. Worth every penny and every sip. Vintages 981787 (August 31)

2017 Coco Rôtie Syrah/Viognier

$24.95 | Australia
Despite the cartoonish label, there’s no monkey business in this bottle. Elegant and refined compared to a typical Aussie shiraz, with notes of plush cherry mated with subtle smoked meat. Vintages 108076 (August 31)


2018 Featherstone Phoenix

$18.95 | Ontario
Like the mythical bird it’s named for, this gewurztraminer rose from the metaphorical ashes of an Ontario vineyard that was decimated by several cold winters. Floral and tropical with just a hint of sweetness. Vintages 519025 (August 31)


2018 Delas Saint-Esprit Côtes du Rhône Rosé

$16.95 | France
Just because summer is winding down doesn’t mean an end to rosé season. This one is jam-packed with concentrated cherry, watermelon and citrus notes. Vintages 224964 (August 31)