LCBO Sale Pick of the Week: Nov. 26

Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon (Colchagua Valley, Chile)

Sale $16.95, Regular $19.95
Discount (until Nov. 29): $3.00
LCBO # 322586 | 750 mL bottle

Tastes like: Supple, ripe and rich plum, blackberry and cherry with a titch of vanilla.
Pairs with: Santa—seriously, leave a glass for the big man and you’ll reap a bounty of stocking stuffers. (T-bone optional.)
Good for: Xmas house wine, New Year’s Eve festivities and secret Santa gift exchanges (you’ll rule).
Alcohol: 14%
Drink: Now.

ClubK. $119 all in. Six delicious wines to put the jingle in your bells.

Why we're drinking this
We’ve waved the Chilean flag many times this past year. And we’ll do it again. This wine is quite simply outstanding. Winemaker Aurelio Montes has been named Winemaker of the Year by Wine Spectator magazine — twice. Yeah, he’s a rock star. And his team has perfected an irrigation technique that delivers optimum water to the vines, reducing consumption by 65 percent. That’s great for the environment and the grapes. The guy’s a magician with Cabernet Sauvignon. And at this price, you might as well check it out.

Tasting note
Let’s face it: Cabernet Sauvignon is a serious wine. It’s not a party wine like, say, Merlot (soft, sexy) or Pinot Noir (bright, lively) or Gamay (kicky, easy). No. Cabernet Sauvignon is “ponderous.” Possibly the most regal of all the grapes. But no party animal. Except when Aurelio Montes gets ahold of it. This winemaker has crafted a really delicious, superbly drinkable, big wine that’s a joy to drink. It’s beautifully made, with lovely supple texture, ripe fruit (blackberry, plum, currant, cherry) and a nice touch of quality oak (vanilla, cedar). It’s big but not imposing, with nice acidity and a lovely, long, fruity finish. You can drink it now and be perfectly happy, though you might get a couple more years out of it. But it’s so good—and so cheap, at $3 off—that you may as well make it your holiday house wine. Leave a glass for Santa—along with a T-bone.

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Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon (Colchagua Valley, Chile)

This week's selection by kwäf Taste Bud Dick Snyder