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Jul 14, 2011 12:36 PM

Looking for wine in Toronto

I am looking for red wines made back in 1952, just wondering if anyone would know where in Toronto I could find them. Thanks.

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  1. There are very few red wines that would hold up to 60 years of aging. Some bordeaux wine and maybe some Brunellos. If you extend the definition to include fortified wines such as port and maderia you have a bit of a better chance.

    In any case a 1952 is going to be considered a rare wine that will cost, at the least a couple hundred dollars a bottle up to a couple thousand.

    It's possible but somewhat unlikely that LCBO Vintages could have a something from that vintage in stock, they do have small quantities of rare wines in the system, either contact their customer service department online or go to the store at Queen's Quay and Cooper Street and speak to one of the product consultants in the Vintages department.

    Other than that the way our wine system works (hate it or tolerate it, nobody really loves it) there really is nobody dealing in rare wines that is locally based. Sometimes a bottle like that will turn up at a rare wine auction run by Ritchies or one of the other auction houses but most people who are into this kind of stuff will buy it from specialty shops or brokers in the US or France and have it shipped. If you're already paying hundreds of dollars for a bottle the shipping is not a big deal.

    18 Replies
    1. re: bytepusher

      Your only real hope is a tawny port or, better, a Madeira. Even the top wines from elsewhere are risky.
      I looked everywhere in 2002 for a similar 'birth year' and that was the only things I could find at reasonable cost. The Miles 1952 Vintage Verdelho madeira was/is excellent - but not available at LCBO.
      I'm not aware of any 'red wine' from 1952 that has survived. But I hope I'm wrong as I still have the 52 Latour in my cellar!!!! Along with a half-bottle of a Champagne that is unlikely to still have bubbles!

      I know one of the wineclubs in Toronto has at least one port plus a madeira from that year - but they aren't allowed to sell wine, only "tastings" - but there's a strong possibility they'll feature that at their 'non-demoninational december party' in 2012, so maybe a ticket to that would be available.

      1. re: estufarian

        Didn't this mysterious wine club serve a 1952 Quinta do Noval at the non-denominational party in 2011? I'm glad there's more 'cause it was fiiiine.

        1. re: bytepusher

          I'm assuming you mean 2010 - but either way I can't see them serving a 58 or 59 year old wine - if it's fine, then hold it for another (couple of) years - but a Doural (?!) Colheita and a Kopke Colheita are certainly there.
          [I'm not being coy about the 'mysterious wine club' - just trying not to contravene Chowhounds rules about organizations - even non-profit - that a poster may have an interest in].

        2. re: estufarian

          how much for the latour???? it is still past its prime me thinks but maybe worth the pedigree at around $300 depending on history

          1. re: ingloriouseater

            1952 Latour, were it available, would be easily well over $1000 at LCBO. Leve (a Bordeaux expert) recently gave it a 92 rating, so appears to be still in drinking window.

            Besides Port and Bordeaux mentioned above, other 1952 wines that may still be in drinking window could be Burgundies and Barolos. As far as I know, there's nothing at LCBO from 1952 vintage. Your best bet is to buy in US.

            estufarian, are you talking about Winetasters of Toronto's annual tastings at the Casa Loma? I thought last year's event was only so so. Hopefully this year is better.

            1. re: syoung

              Last year didn't include any 1961's!!!
              But I thought some good 1990 (Grange Hermitage, Leoville Barton) and 1985 (Les Forts de Latour) Agree the 1998 Rayas was a disappointment. And the 95 Vega Sicilia was my favourite, so not too shabby!
              Wasn't as impressed with the New World - but the 1910 Madeira was stupendous!

              And totally new caterer this year.

              1. re: estufarian

                Didn't the previous year (2009) had the 1850 Madeira or something? I remember if was musty as heck! Good to hear about the new caterer. IIRC, food at the event was mostly nuts and shrimp cocktail.

                Yes, the LCBO forbids selling wine without their consent. However, this hasn't stopped the occassional transaction between wine geeks as can clearly be seen on the wine boards. ;-) Oh... and if you put your '52 Latour at the LCBO auction, you'll surely get more than $300!

                1. re: syoung

                  I'm a drinker - not an investor!
                  Ideally madeiras should be opened a few days ahead (they say) - but that's not easy to organize when there are 300+ people attending (or even 50 for that matter).

                  2009 featured an 1834 madeira (175 years old)

            2. re: ingloriouseater

              Selling wine is illegal in Ontario except under the auspices of the government monopoly!!!
              If you die then your estate can sell it - but that's not worth $300 to me.

              1. re: estufarian

                you should really be generous and give someone a bottle of wine for free with every $1000 pencil they purchase

                1. re: atomeyes

                  1952 Chateau Margaux, Margaux, France. View other Margaux Bordeaux wines ...
                  Click to contact
                  Vint Price
                  See Notes
                  K&L Wine Merchants
                  USA (CA): Redwood City. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Visit Store CA$764.48
                  H/bottle (375ml)

                  UK: London. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Visit Store CA$774.97

                  Other 1952 vintage wines with Margaux Bordeaux in their name ...
                  Belgium Wine Watchers
                  Belgium: Antwerp [Antwerpen]. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Chateau Brane-Cantenac, Margaux, France CA$135.96

                  Paulson Rare Wine
                  Germany: Bavaria [Bayern]. Some prices listed may include sales tax. 1952 Chateau Palmer, Margaux, France CA$169.96

                  France: Languedoc-Roussillon. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Chateau Brane-Cantenac, Margaux, France CA$203.50

                  Paulson Rare Wine
                  Germany: Bavaria [Bayern]. Some prices listed may include sales tax. 1952 Chateau Palmer, Margaux, France CA$237.94

                  France: Languedoc-Roussillon. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Chateau Palmer, Margaux, France CA$477.47

                  Paulson Rare Wine
                  Germany: Bavaria [Bayern]. Some prices listed may include sales tax. 1952 Chateau Palmer, Margaux, France CA$509.87

                  Comptoir des Vignobles
                  France: Bordeaux. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Chateau Paveil de Luze, Margaux, France CA$516.67

                  20-20 Wine Merchants
                  USA (CA): Los Angeles. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Chateau Boyd Cantenac, Margaux, France CA$569.29

                  20-20 Wine Merchants
                  USA (CA): Los Angeles. Price excludes sales tax. 1952 Chateau Brane-Cantenac, Margaux, France CA$856.33

                  1. re: ingloriouseater

                    And don't forget the 100+% markup if you bring it in - so cheaper to fly there and carry it back as part of 'duty-free' allowance!!!

                    1. re: estufarian

                      The personal exemption maximum is $750, it is not even enough for your bottle of 52 Chateau Latour, provided you get nothing else, so what should I do ? They charge you 100% markup after the maximum allowance for alcohol.

                      1. re: skylineR33

                        Move to Alberta! You only have to pay PST there!
                        More seriously, if very expensive wine is involved, the duties are levied at the point of entry, so fly through Edmonton or Calgary (if possible).

                        However, it is ONLY the HST (in Ontario) that you have to pay over $750 - not the LCBO markup, which is by far the highest part of the 'taxes'.

                        1. re: estufarian

                          Do you mean if I get a $1000 wine, I only have to pay the HST on $250 , no other duty and custom fee I have to pay ??

                          1. re: skylineR33

                            Not necessarily!

                            If it is within your '(wine/liquor) duty free allowance' and the wine accompanies you then only GST/HST over the standard (up to $750 dependng on length of absence) is payable.

                            But OVER the duty free allowance then multiple 'fees' apply - could easily be over 100%.

                            Non-accompanied - even with appropriate 'legal permissions' will be about 143% - plus any brokerage fees.

                            And for absolute clarity - if you've been out of country for a week (say) and bring in the 'usual' allowance of 2 bottles then you are still (and ONLY) liable for HST (in Ontario) for the value in excess of $750 (as you stated).

                            1. re: estufarian

                              Thank you for the information. I thought for wine, I have to pay more duty fee for the value in excess of the maximum even if it is within the duty free allowance (which is 1.5L per person).

                  2. re: atomeyes

                    Fails the 'fair contract' test!
                    So confiscated plus a fine.