Two solitudes to tango

lcbo latin tango campaign saq latin tango campaign
ontario south american wine salequebec south american wine sale
Having your own website on a holiday is giant trap of tackiness. On Valentine's Day it's the kiss of death, especially for blogs, and above all for wineblogs. Wine is perceived to be romantic.

If Google slips into their masthead a chocolate-covered strawberry that cleverly looks like a "g" and Yahoo! depicts a little love story with raining hearts on their logo, then of course a wineblog would want to at least feature a special post, if not totally customize Blogger's template to shades of pink and red.

So what do I do? Last February 14 I sent a valentine to an inanimate object. This year is winding up to be no better since I am about to do an exposé on collective nouns falling in love with one another. It's state-run corporation love!

Pictured above are the current ad campaigns of the LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario) and the SAQ (Société des Alcools du Québec). First some background for those who don't know: These two wine monopolies cut a line that divides a English province from a French one. Like the Capulets and the Montagues, they don't mix well. If you've ever tried returning to the LCBO tainted wine you bought at the SAQ you know this. They'll shake their fists at you and growl that you should go back to where you came from. You'd think that they were mortal enemies.

But what to make of these pictures then? Both trumpet the arrival of South American wine; both celebrate the fact that love is the air. Well why not? Chilean and Argentinian wines are typically released at this time of the year. And it is Valentine's Day too, isn't it? Add that to the fact that we all know Latin Americans tango at the drop of hat (I don't think they stop tangoing on February 14 at all, except to eat and to watch Evita). Put all this together and -- whoomp, there it is! -- the SAQ and LCBO are in lovey-dovey lockstep, casting curious glances at each other like it's the first night of instructional ballroom dancing at the Gatineau community centre. They have so much in common it's evitable that they will fall hopelessy and irrevocably in love, and... um... merge.

Until then (but not for long) the two corporations continue to operate separately. The SAQ's worldly and exotic promotion runs through the weekend. The discounts during the LCBO's Latin Fever last a bit longer -- until February 24. Click on the tangoing twosomes at top for details.


semi.superlative said...

sigh... i turn to weingolb in the hopes it might be the one outlet i can trust not to mention this obnoxious st-valentine's thing, but alas... maybe it's natural to be contemplating liquor at such a time... you tell me. does weingolb have any recommendations on the best wines for the weakest hangovers...? perhaps a long-term study...

Marcus g58 said...


These urges you are feeling are perfectly natural. Thanks for coming to see the Doktor about it.

Regarding you question, let me me try to préciser un peu... best wines for when you've already got a hangover or wines that are least likely to cause one?

semi.superlative said...

the latter. although the very fact that you make such a distinction leads me to believe i've come to the right man, and a man of experience in these things...

Joe said...

Bringing back a corked LCBO bottle to SAQ? Nice try!

Marcus g58 said...


This is Alex. Marcus just switched accounts on my PC and now I'm answering all his queries.

Sorry didn't mean to call you a query.

(PS - It's actually Marcus and I'm a drunk fool... I've got to go; many new bottles of unopened liquor and black glasses from which to drink. We'll have a glass for you, but I can't promise that I won't get poisoned from the massive amount of uncooked fish we're about to ingest, so you may never hear from me again. Take care... and do your own freaking research about hangover booze. Ta!)

Marcus g58 said...

That last bit was Alex. She a ho.

Marcus g58 said...

These last two comment entries attributed to me occurred during empirical testing performed by me and Alex, leaders of a short-term study on which wines spawn the greatest hangovers.

I would delete these comments made by myself and my assistant but I've decided to keep them logged as significant measurable response to key stimuli in our experiment. They may therefore help answer the question posed here.

Suffice to say for now that any substantial amount of wine accompanied by a dinner of sushi appears to be a factor in the development of a fairly strong hangover. Both red and white wine were involved in our study (we also integrated a bottle of rosé wine during testing).

More to report back on soon. The second part of the study -- wine's effect on existing hangovers -- begins shortly with a four-bottle dinner imminently scehduled for this afternoon.