Domaine Le Clos des Cazaux

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Cazaux facade 2 (466 x 350)

Domaine le Clos des Cazaux has been growing wine for five generations and is based on two families, the Vaches and the Archimbauds. The domaine is now run by two brothers, Jean-Michel and Frédéric Vache.

Their ancestor, Gabriel Archimbaud was the first to bottle wine in Vacqueyras and he participated in establishment of the Côtes du Rhône appellation in 1936. Gabriel was also a friend of Jean-Louis Chave (famous for his iconic Hermitage reds from Syrah in the Northern Rhône) and he looked for the best place to plant Syrah on his property. He opted for the more clay-dominated soils that were less hot than the sand and marne.

Until World War Two, the domaine was a mixed farm, also growing asparagus, apricots and cherries. Vines were reserved for the poorest soils, where the wine potential was best. Gabriel created Le Clos des Cazaux in 1936 with 20ha around the farm (le Clos) and his sons, Maurice & Jean purchased 40ha of wood and 3 ha of vines in Gigondas on the south-facing side of the Dentelles in 1954.

Today, the domaine cultivates 48 ha (122 acres) of which, 24 ha are in Vacqueyras, 20 ha are in Gigondas and 4 ha are in Côtes du Rhône.

The majority of their Vacqueyras vines are situated on slopes around the domaine. This is in contrast to the mainly flat vineyards of the rest of the Vacqueyras appellation. In addition, the sandy-clay soils allows for the production of very fresh white wines. Indeed, Clos des Cazaux was one of a handful of producers to pioneer the cultivation of the Clairette grape in the appellation and is now one of the largest producers of white wine in Vacqueyras. The “Clefs d’Or” cuvée is wonderfully fresh and ideal as an aperitif, or with light fish dishes. The Vieilles Vignes Vacqueyras cuvée, aged in oak, is a stunning, gourmet white wine which can age many years.

The two Vacqueyras red wines are fermented in stainless steel and aged in concrete with no use of oak. The “St Roch” cuvée is a classic grenache-dominated wine boasting wonderful red fruits aromas with a tannic structure that demands provencal food. The “Templiers” cuvée is more orientated towards Syrah with greater tannin, though still silky, even in its youth.

Their Gigondas terroir is located on the small section of the appellation which is south facing, bringing riper, bigger fruit than is generally found in the other wines of the appellation. Cazaux’s Gigondas soils are very high in limestone content which underpins a great mineral edge to their two cuvées. The Prestige cuvée is made from old vines is partially aged in oak, providing additional complexity without over-powering the expression of terroir in the wine.

Wine Details

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Vacqueyras “Les Clefs d’Or” White: Clairette with Roussanne and Grenache Blanc. Sandy slopes. Fermented and matured in stainless. Ageing potential: Up to 4 years.

Vacqueyras “Vielles Vignes” White: Majority old vine Clairette with Roussanne and Viognier. Sandy slopes. Fermented in stainless and matured in small oak barrels. Ageing potential: Up to 5 years, for freshness; between 9 and 15 years for nutty, matured wine style.

Côtes du Rhône Rosé: Cinsault, Grenache with Syrah. Young vines from Vacqueyras declassified. Fermented and matured in stainless. Ageing potential: Up to 2 years.

Côtes du Rhône Red: Majority Grenache with Syrah. Young vines from Vacqueyras declassified. Fermented in stainless. Matured in concrete. Ageing potential: Up to 4 years.

Vacqueyras “Cuvée Saint Roch”: Majority Grenache with Syrah and a little Mourvèdre. Sandy, clay-limestone soils on slopes. Fermented in stainless and matured in concrete. Ageing potential: Up to 10 years.

Vacqueyras “Cuvée des Templiers”: High Syrah content. Sandy, clay soils on slopes. Fermented in stainless and matured in concrete. Ageing potential: Up to 10 years.

Gigondas “La Tour Sarrasine”: Majority Grenache with Syrah and Mourvèdre. Limestone, south facing slopes. Fermented in stainless and matured in concrete. Ageing potential: Up to 12 years.

Gigondas “Prestige”: Grenache with Syrah and Mourvèdre. Limestone, south facing slopes. Fermented in stainless and matured one to three wine-old small oak barrels. Ageing potential: Up to 15 years.

Vin de France “Les Grains de Novembre”: Grenache blanc with noble rot (botrytis) picked in November. Clay-limestone south facing slopes. Fermented in small containers and matured in three wine-old small oak barrels. Ageing potential: Forever.

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Listed below: One in USA; Two in UK

cazaux templier bottle (100 x 300)
cazaux st roch bottle (84 x 300)
cazaux novembre bottle
cazaux sarazine bottle (88 x 300)
Cazaux tasting room
clos_cazaux_04 (216 x 144)
Cazaux Fredéric (216 x 144)