Hermanos Lurton Tempranillo 2012

It’s big, spanish, has gripping tannins and notes of medium-heavy toasted oak.  My new benchmark Tempranillo.  Alcohol/Vol 15%.  100% Tempranillo.
Update: Discontinued and reduced in price from $16.95 -> $13.95 -> $7.60 (so basically a sane non-Canadian price)
At a Glance
Taste blackberry, earth, toasted oak
Smell mulberry, blueberry, grape skins
Food stew, game
Sweetness extra dry
Price $13.95
LCBO# 372342
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Update: 6 Months Later (2016-03):

Taste: cassis, black tea, plum

Smell: mulberry, blackberry, blueberry, cedar, tobacco

 

 

 

Audience Score

Muriel Reserva Vendimia Seleccionada 2008

24 months in oak and it shows well.  Nearly overpowering but the tannins balance it well. 
Alcohol/Vol 13.5%
At a Glance
Taste oak, licorice, blackberry
Smell oak, black cherry, spice
Food tapas
Sweetness extra dry
Price $18.95
LCBO# 276030
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Monte Antico Toscana IGT 2010

Firm tannins with an extra dry finish.  Tannis from the barrels come through moderately strong.  This wine is unmistakenly a Tuscan style blend.  

85% Sangiovese with 10% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon

 

Alcohol/Vol 12.9% from Tuscany, Italy.

At a Glance
Taste ripe berries, leather, vanilla
Smell oak, black cherry, earth
Food pasta with red sauce
Sweetness extra dry
Price $15.95
LCBO# 69377
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PKNT Carmenere 2010

Wow there is a stock photo of a chili pepper on the bottle, I better by this for someone I know who likes spicy foods!
Editor’s note: that is a horrible idea
Could someone explain to me why the label says “contains eggs”?
At a Glance
Taste spicy, dark fruit, vanilla
Smell blueberry, vanilla, oak
Food tex-mex
Sweetness dry
Price $10.95
LCBO# 191858
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Farnese Montepulciano D’Abruzzo 2012

A swing and a miss by the winery of my house wine. With no depth in the nose or on the palate, this wine is very mundane.
It’s one of the cheapest reds in the LCBO, so there is that. 12.5%
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste red berry,vanilla,plum
Smell pomegranate,vanilla,oak
Food italian, pizza
Sweetness off dry
Price $7.95
LCBO# 621912
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McWilliams Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

Overall a decent weekday wine.  Not a lot of structure or depth but worth picking up a bottle if you’re looking for a different general list cabernet sauvignon priced around 15 bucks.
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste strawberry, raspberry, spice
Smell blueberry, oak, dark cherry
Food sandwiches
Sweetness dry
Price $15.00
LCBO# 214577
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Red Rock Malbec Reserve 2010

While typically not a fan of malbecs, this one is quite good. I liked the fruit forward characteristics of it – which aren’t seen in malbecs from places like South America, making this bottle…very…Californian.
I disagree with the LCBO’s sweetness descriptor of Extra Dry. Dry it is, Extra it is not.
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste mulberry, oak, cherry
Smell mulberry, currant, oak
Food beef, asiago
Sweetness dry
Price $16.95
LCBO# 284315
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Dancing Bull Zinfandel 2010

This wine has a great profile however while drinking it I found it lacks mouthfeel and depth. Both key aspects this California Zinfandel lover craves.
I will say Dancing Bull is a good value if you are just getting into zins. (Expect to pay an extra 5 to 6 dollars to get the depth).
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste spice, raspberry, oak
Smell blueberry, cherry, oak
Food anything grilled, asiago
Sweetness dry
Price $12.95
LCBO# 669499
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35 South Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva 2009

A big, fruit forward, juicy cabernet sauvignon from Chile isn’t something I’ve had in years.  They had a good run in 2007-2008 but it’s been an uphill battle ever since.  Was pleasantly surprised with this bottle.
A strong red weighing in at 14.0 %
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste rasin, cassis, oak
Smell rasin, dark berry, oak
Food cheese, red meat
Sweetness dry
Price $12.95
LCBO# 170019
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Henry of Pelham – Sibling Rivalry Red 2009

A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from the 2007 vintage
The white outshines the red
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste dark berry, oak, plum
Smell blackberry, raspberry, oak
Food burgers, bbq
Sweetness off dry
Price $13.95
LCBO# 126151
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Folonari Valpolicella 2009

Even though there isn’t a lot going on in the glass, it’s not a bad choice at all for casual bbq food. Not sure if this is really LCBO #828 or what I have listed below, the price difference is 4 more dollars.
This valpolicella is a blend of 65% Corvina, 25% Rondinella, 10% Molinara
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste cherry, oak
Smell cherry, oak, raspberry
Food pizza, burgers
Sweetness dry
Price $8.00
LCBO# 6254
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Camplazens Syrah 2006

At first sip you can tell this is a french wine without even trying.   The LCBO gave this wine a nice writeup but I’ll disagree with it.  They saw plenty of blackberry, fruit and spice, I didn’t.  They also mention it’s ‘very drinkable tonight’, while I’d cellar it for 2 years.
At least it’s 13.5% Alcohol/Vol.
Tip: If your buying syrah/shiraz, go Aussie (Penfolds), then Californian (Cline)
At a Glance
Taste oak, heat, red berry
Smell oak, resin, greens
Food well done grilled red meat
Sweetness extra dry
Price $14.95
LCBO# 104752
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Tatone Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2005

For those wondering, Tatone means ‘grandfather’. This Italian wine is rich, dry and full bodied.
The first thing you’ll notice is the deep purple colour and legs on this wine.
Tip: tulip glass
At a Glance
Taste blackberry, oak, bitters
Smell mulberry, black cherry, oak
Food grilled portobello mushrooms
Sweetness extra dry
Price $15.95
LCBO# 994616
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Perez Cruz Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva 2007

This is the 2007 vintage of the site favourite 2005. Once finding such a great wine you hope that subsequent years will be on par or better, but this vintage reminds us that grapes and wine are living, breathing, unformulated works – the weather changes from year to year, as does the soil and grapes, making the recipe change and so on.
With all the above said, this is still a good wine, just not as great as previous vintages. You can tell it spent a bit too much time in the barrel and didn’t taste as refined as it could be.  Well worth a try if you particularly like french or ontario reds.
Tip: drink a bottle and cellar the other for 1 or 2 years
At a Glance
Taste oak, medium berry, eucalyptus
Smell blackberry, oak, black tea
Food beef, sausages
Sweetness dry
Price $14.95
LCBO# 694208
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