By Gaby Israel
2005 Baron de Ley Reserva – $19.95
I had this wine from its 1998 vintage. Never failed. Very consistent. Typical Rioja Reserva. From the successful 2005 vintage expect one of the best $20 you’ll spend this release. Goes very well with lamb.
2008 D’arenberg Grenache The Custodian, Mclaren Vale, South Australia, Australia – $19.95
Yet another consistent producer, this time from Australia. I find D’Arenberg “The Custodian” always rewarding. It’s the kind of wine that you take a big sip, sit back, relax and feel at home. This wine is the “2005 Baron de Ley Reserva” competition wine for wines around $20 that are absolutely terrific.
2007 Domaine du Haut des Terres Blanches Châteauneuf-du-Pape – $37.95
Great supportive review by Natalie and Parker. Another great 07’ Châteauneuf-du-Pape (CdP) for the cellar for under $40. It’s GPCi is a round ~2.5 which makes it a no brainer for buying 2-6 bottles.
2008 Thorn-Clarke Shiraz Cabernet Petit Verdot Terra Barossa, Barossa, South Australia – $14.95
If you are tasked with bringing 2 bottles to a dinner this weekend and you want to get the love of the audience, for only $30 you are more than safe buying this one. Haven’t had anything less than great from Thorn-Clarke – a very crowed pleasing wine and an excellent QPR.
2008 Château St. Georges , A.C., St-Georges St-Émilion, Bordeaux, France – $29.95
I have to admit, first time I bought a bottle of Château St. Georges was in the late 90’s and what got my attention was the label. It’s a combination of old world/traditional Bordeaux label with a touch of new. I’ve visited the Chateau in 2004 and since then I’ve completely fallen in love. This is a great representation of St. Emilion without going to the bank to ask for a second mortgage. I’d buy 2-6 bottles for the cellar. If you open one tonight, let it breathe for at least an hour if not more.
2008 Penfolds Cabernet Sauvignon Bin 407, South Australia, Australia – $34.95
In challenging vintages like the 2008 in South Australia, it’s the skill and art of making wine that makes the difference. I’ve had Penfolds Bin 407 for many years now and even in “bad years” this wine tastes good… J
Bin 407 can usually lay down for 10-12 years, but I wouldn’t push it too much with this one. Buy 2-3 bottles and open the first one in 5 years and decide what to do with the other bottles in the cellar. A great companion for a rib-eye or NY steak.
Gaby Israel has been providing wine tasting notes and buying recommendations for several years now. The name WineGPCi (pronounced Wine Gypsy) was given by his friends. GPCi stands for Gaby’s Potential Cellaring Index. While searching for “treasures for the cellar” without going to the bank, the GPCi was initially used to calculate the ratio between the price of the wine and the number of years it can potentially be cellared for; trying to find the wines that had the smallest index/ratio possible.
Any good wine that had a GPCi of 3.5 and under, was worth buying (mainly if you were planning to develop a cellar). Many years and “750 bottles in the cellar” after, his knowledge, experience and passion continued to grow. He continues to focus on helping the consumer finding “logical” ways of buying wines and planning the budget for it.
His great passion for wine revolves around old-world wines such as Spain, France and Italy while experimenting the new world exciting regions of Chile, Argentina, Australia, Canada, the US and others.