Did anyone already know about this? As if I needed another reason to spend money....
I like the idea of being able to taste on the spot.
The LCBO has a discount store with real deals on good bottles. No kidding
By David Lawrason
It’s not as frenzied as Future Shop on Boxing Day, but the LCBO’s Clearance Centre in the Crossroads Centre (2625D Weston Rd., 416-243-3320) at Weston Road and the 401 should be on every wine adventurer’s now-and-again list. Prices are reduced 20 to 40 per cent at this dumping ground for discontinued LCBO general listings, Vintages sale items and private-order wines not sold to restaurants before their allotted time in the warehouse expired. Opened in 2000 next to a conventional LCBO/Vintages, the place is big and basic, with towering steel shelves and clumps of boxes. Wine-savvy Carl Salmon, the man in charge, tastes many of the products in order to provide advice. This matters, as quite a few of the wines (and most spirits) are obscure, perhaps explaining why they never sold. Some were also overpriced or overstocked, neither necessarily meaning lesser quality. I have unearthed gems, including a fabulous Alana Estate 2001 pinot noir from New Zealand for under $30, delisted Woodbridge 2003 syrah from California at $11.85 a bottle and a clutch of handy $6 half-bottles of Osborne Fino Quinta sherry. There are usually about 100 brands available, stock turning over every two weeks. Good deals vanish quickly, so make snap decisions—even buy a bottle and taste on the spot. Except for defective bottles, all sales are final.
I'm surprised that he admist tasting, never mind buying, Woodbridge!
I'm both happy and sad that I live nowhere near this outlet. I don't suppose that their products are listed on the website, are they? If so, perhaps they would transfer something to my neighbourhood store, as they do other stuff?
I saw that too. Definitely on my list to check out one of these days.
Was there on the weekend; nothing special there; warehouse was pretty bare; I am thinking it is a hit and miss place to shop; A little far to go to, especially with the traffic in the area
Now....where's that Screwpull?
I wouldn't get too excited about these sales. I've been there a number of times and the selection is sparse and full of stuff nobody usually wants. Every once in a while I've found a gem or two (e.g. a number of Domaine Weinbach cuvees)but generally it's quite unexciting.
Hit and miss is the best way to describe it. I have bought some Lamarche Vosne Romanee and Vougeraie Burgundy in the past for very fair prices. Unless I was in the neighborhood, I would not make a special trip, but it is one of my stops on the way from home to visit the in-laws in Oshawa.
Agree with the others. I've been there a number of times and the sale selection is weak. I would stop in if you're in the area but it's not worth a trip on it's own. The LCBO it is linked to is ok though, they have a large Vintage section in the middle of the store.
Be prepared for an adventure getting in and out of this mall complex, especially on a weekend, brutal parking lot design.
I used to pop into this place a few years ago on Monday nights when I used to play hockey down the road. Never did buy anything from the clearance section (mostly junk) but would occasionally find interesting 'stuff' in the Vintages section of the adjoining LCBO that mwaters mentions.
I agree with all the negative comments made above. My one trip there took 45 minutes from downtown on a Wednesday evening, and then I thought I was risking never seeing my car again when eventually parked in the lot. Several scratches later, it was still there.
The store itself is quite "grotty" - I can't imagine David Lawrason pulling out a corkscrew and his best stems to sample a "gem" that he found there. On the other hand ... to each his own...
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