Toronto trip

Looking for some guidance - I am going to be in downtown Toronto for 4 days. Can anyone recommend a good wine shop? Also, any BYOB restaurants? I am staying at the Bond Hotel - walking distance would be a plus. Thanks!

Mike, I’m not sure about Toronto but most providences have government controlled liquor stores and I don’t recall any Canadian retailers posting here. Maybe posting in the travel section or the wine talk section might get you more responses. I have no idea about BYOB. Have a great trip!

LCBO = Liquor CONTROL Board of Ontario. I remember the days when you browsed through a typewritten catalog, filled out your order sheet, and then brought it to the front desk. The officer woudl then disappear into the back, and bring out your order, and deliver it to you in a paper bag, after you have paid in cash, as they didn’t accept credit cards, or even checks. That is if you could even find the outlet, since they were located on back streets to further discourage impulse buying.

They are much more consumer friendly these days. There website is excellent. I would suggest browsing through it to find wines that you are interested in, and visit that location. Online inventories are pretty accurate. While you are there, pick up a copy of their FREE Food & Drink magazine.

Also go to, it is a more wine specialized site of the LCBO.

I doubt that you will see any familiar wines that you can’t get cheaper in the US, but you may want to take the opportunity to look at some of the Ontario wines. A big store will have a decent selection of late harvest and icewines. I would also suggest that the Chardonnays are very good if you like cooler climate versions. The reds are variable in quality.

Mike, As Errol says it is a monopoly and generally sucks for the wine lover, but you very well may find a some wines at better prices than in the US. The selection is the real issue. Burgs & Germans are often cheaper here, but selection is modest.
Best to visit one or two of the larger vintages stores in the city, such as the Summerhill store on the subway line and the Queens Quay store near the lakefront. Both are worth a look if you have the time.
BYO is common. Corkage is usually $25 up to $40 at high end places. A few places offer deals on corkage on Mondays or Tuesdays.

Thank you all so much for your comments and advice!