Updated January 2023
 

An Introduction to Vintage Assessments by Gilberto Bojaca

Tasting and sharing information has always been a passion for Michael Vaughan. As a lifetime consumer advocate, Michael initially developed this not-for-profit website to share his personal reviews for new LCBO VINTAGES releases.

Up until the pandemic, he personally tasted every Vintages release at weekly tastings in the special LCBO downtown Toronto lab. He first published Vintage Assessments pro bono in 1990 for the Sommelier Guild of Canada at George Brown College. Now 33 years later he is doing it on line via this website for every biweekly Vintages release.

His website currently provides readers with over 68,000 detailed linked reviews dating back to 2001. It is Canada's only public, paywall-free source providing 100% coverage of every Vintages release with details on all wines presented along special linked summaries with agent id & LCBO cases purchased.

For consistency, his tasting notes have always based on the classic ISO tasting glass. In pre-pandemic past he would assess up to 8,000+ bottles annually. His unpaid & unsolicited reviews are advertorial-free and are meant to be shared with fellow wine lovers. In addition to Vintages, his reviews include special selections from importers and producers plus Ontario winery-only selections & consignment wines.

An internationally-accredited wine judge & a founding director of the Society of Wine Educators at UC Davis, Michael is one of Canada’s leading critics. For 9 years he was the award-winning weekly columnist at the National Post. Before that the national wine columnist at the Globe & Mail and the Financial Times of Canada along with Toronto Life Magazine.

He has travelled extensively judging at various international competitions - including the California State Fair, Vinexpo Bordeaux, VinItaly, VERITAS & ABSA Top Ten Pinotage in South Africa, Argentina, etc. His favourite is judging at the annual Concours Mondial du Sauvignon and the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. At the annual Ontario Wine Awards he sponsors an special award for the Ontario's Best Sauvignon Blanc.

You can also find over 500 of his weekly features from the National Post archived on this website (see home page lower right for his search engine). He has a PhD is in Economics from UofT and was a professor at Ryerson University (now Toronto Metropolitan University). He is also involved with various fund-raising activities. In 2021 he donated 2,500 bottles of curated Canadian wines from his personal collection to Brock University's Canadian Wine Library. In 2022 he launched VintagesCatalogue.com providing free pdfs for every Vintages Release Catalogue. Most recently he contibuted to the Scarborough Health Network Foundation. You can contact him at mbv@uniserve.com