The Best Deal at the BCL This Week: An Awesome Aussie Cab for $13

We don't get deals at the BCLDB very often, so it's gather ye rosebuds time!

Complaining about our wine monopoly is like picking low-hanging grapes. Almost no one likes our system—either in theory or in practice—except for those directly employed by it. I don’t love the monopoly either, but as someone who spends too much time thinking about wine and spirits, I do have to admit it’s not all terrible all the time (check out this post from a few years back where we show 5 bottles that are a global good deal at the BCLDB).

Saltram Cabernet Sauvignon S1 2019, $12.99 (until April 29)

A case in point is this smoking deal that’s available until April 29th. At $13 it’s almost 35% off, which is almost unheard of in the aisles of the BC Liquor stores, where they celebrate taking $2 off a $36 bottle of wine like it’s VE Day. But more importantly, it’s a wine that’s actually worth seeking out—a large-production wine that doesn’t seek to smooth out all its edges into a large blobby mass of jammy fruit designed to offend no one and delight even fewer.

Instead, it embraces that subtle touch of greenness that exists in Cabernet Sauvignon. Not overpowering green pepper, but subtle eucalyptus that gives the wine with a thread of freshness running through it, and maybe a touch of fresh fennel for some bite. It’s a confident move that’s tough to find in wines costing 3 times this amount—in wines under $15, it’s a godsend.

And an added bonus is that the wine was already really aggressively priced to begin with. In its home country, the wine checks in at around $25AUS, which is $22.50 CDN. Saltram is winery with a long history, but it’s now owned by the huge Treasury Wine Estates. My gut tells me that the ongoing Australia-China trade dispute is somewhere along the line responsible for this bonanza, as a country that just a few years ago was one of Australia’s biggest wine importers is now essentially closed to most bottles.

And before we start through a parade for the BCL, I should note it’s the importer and producer who are likely sponsoring this temporary largesse, if only for a short while.