LCBO makes gifting and entertaining easy this holiday season

TORONTO, Nov. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - During LCBO's Holiday Wrapped Up promotion, customers can find gifts for everyone on their list with a wide selection of gift packs, unique bottles and limited edition selections. With more than 625 stores across the province and more than 150 new gift packs, LCBO has gift and entertaining solutions for every occasion and budget this festive season.

"Our holiday focus this year is on simple and easy entertaining and gifting solutions," explains Bob Downey, LCBO Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing. "With so many festivities and gift exchanges, LCBO can be a one-stop shop for all these occasions. With such a broad selection of new and returning favourites, our hosting and gift options are almost endless."

LCBO's complete holiday assortment can be found using the interactive gift finder at www.lcboholiday.com.  Recipes for holiday cocktails, alcohol-free Mocktails and helpful entertaining tips are also available on this microsite. To help you find the perfect gift for everyone on your list, here are some of the top holiday picks from LCBO and VINTAGES:

GIFTS FOR WINE LOVERS

  • NHL Alumni Wines Hat Trick Holiday Gift Pack with Toque - 2x 750ml - $29.95
  • Chocolate Shop, the chocolate lover's wine - 750ml -  $15.95
  • Bottega Gold Sparkling Vino Dei Poeti - 750ml - $22.95
  • Veuve Clicquot Ice Jacket - 750ml - $67.85

Sparkling wines remain a tried and true holiday classic.  In 2011, LCBO sales of Champagnes and sparkling wines increased to $23.2 million in December. The holiday period accounts for 22 per cent of annual LCBO Champagne and sparkling wine sales.

FOR THOSE WITH SPIRIT

  • Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum gift pack with toque and mitts - 750ml - $32.95
  • ABSOLUT® UNIQUE limited edition bottles - nearly four million produced, no two bottles alike - 750ml - $26.45
  • 66 Gilead Pine Flavoured Vodka from Prince Edward County - 750ml - $38.95

Vodka is hugely versatile and represents the largest sales category of LCBO spirits. Consumers continue to seek out premium vodkas as well as those with unique flavours.  Spiced rum is also expected to be a holiday favourite with sales up 27 per cent leading into December.

GETTING CRAFTY WITH BEER

  • Les Trois Mousquetaires Grand Cuvée Weizenbock 2012 - 750ml - $9.95
  • Unibroue La Terrible - 750ml - $10.95
  • Ontario Craft Breweries Holiday 2012 Discovery Pack - 6 pack - $11.95

LCBO's seasonal craft beer program has grown more than 360 per cent in the last five years. "We continue to work with local and international craft breweries to bring a unique selection of beers year-round, including those truly sought-after items that are popular over the holidays," says Downey.

SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE AT VINTAGES

  • Bordeaux Discovery Chest  - six bottles from Bordeaux in a wooden chest - 6 x 750ml - $129.95
  • Henry of Pelham Riesling Icewine Trio - 3 x 200ml - $99.95
  • Flat Rock Cellars Riddled Sparkling Wine - 750ml - $24.95

The VINTAGES gift finder at www.vintages.com/gifts is a mobile-friendly site providing gifting solutions for the hard-to-buy-for people on your list or the wine collector.

LCBO gift cards also make great holiday presents. With new seasonal designs, these cards are now available at LCBO stores and more than 3,000 other retail locations, including Shoppers Drug Mart, Shell, Walmart and Metro. In December 2011, LCBO gift card sales rose more than 16 per cent to $23 million. Nearly 65 per cent of all LCBO gift card sales occur during the holiday season. For more information, visit www.lcbo.com/giftcards .

LCBO holiday sales in 2011 totalled $620 million, representing 14 per cent of last year's total business. Last December, the average LCBO customer spent $47 compared to $38 at other times in the year. December 22 and 23 were the busiest selling days for LCBO last year, with sales of $41 million and $53 million respectively. This year, LCBO expects December 21 and 22 to be the busiest shopping days.

To promote safe and memorable holiday celebrations, "Deflate the Elephant", LCBO's social responsibility education campaign, will once again hit the web, airwaves, street and LCBO stores encouraging people to plan ahead, drink responsibly and to never consume alcohol when driving. Visit www.deflatetheelephant.com, a one-stop source for responsible hosting tips, tools and alcohol-free Mocktail recipes.

For more information on the Holiday Wrapped Up promotion, customers can call the toll-free, bilingual helloLCBO Contact Centre at 1-800-ONT-LCBO (668-5226) or online at www.hellolcbo.com. In Toronto, call 416 365-5900. They will be open for extended holiday hours on Sundays during November and December. The TTY number for people who are deaf or hard of hearing is 416 864-6898 or 1-800-361-3291. Customers can also access the LCBO website at www.lcbo.com and VINTAGES information at www.vintages.com.

Consumers are reminded to bring a reusable bag when shopping at the LCBO and to return empty beverage alcohol containers (large and small glass bottles, PET plastic, Tetra Pak cartons, bag-in-box and cans) to The Beer Store for a full deposit refund.

SOURCE: LCBO

For further information:

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Heather MacGregor, LCBO Media Relations Coordinator
Tel. 416.864.6772; Cell: 416.587.3729
E-mail: heather.macgregor@lcbo.com

Lauren Wolff, Wolff Public Relations                        
Tel. 416.901.0393 Cell: 416.451.2061
Email: lauren@wolffpublicrelations.com