​Domaine Le Clos des Cazaux, Vacqueyras


This domaine is also known as Domaine Archimbaud-Vache, from a maternal Archimbaud and a paternal Vache. The Archimbaud family can be traced back to 1791 in Vacqueyras, and it is likely that the property has belonged to the Templar Knights, since the word cazaux might be derived from "chasal" after the farmer responsible for livestock and croops at that time! It was Gabriel Archimbaud, who expanded and consolidated wine production around the Cazaux. When the sons, Jean and Maurice took over in 1954, the domaine was known as Archimbaud Fréres. Subsequently, Maurice Vache and Lucette Archimbaud, the daughter of Jean, enherited Domaine Le Clos des Cazaux in 1980. They were joined by their sons, Jean-Michel and Frédéric in 1990. The vineyard holdings include some 20 ha of Vacqueyras, including the Clos des Cazaux of more than 80 year old vines behind the house, from where you have a magnificent view towards the Dentelles de Montmirail. Vineyard holdings also include som 20 ha in the mountains of Gigondas.

The vines in Vacqueyras include Grenache (14.5 ha), Syrah (4.5 ha), and Mouvédre, Clairette and Cinsault the rest. Vineyard work is carried out respectfully as to the ecosystem, and a green harvest keeps the average yield at some 30 hl/ha. No destemming and no crushing, but a cooled prefermentive maceration to extract glycerol and release aromas followed by alcoholic fermentation, resulting in a total cuvaison of 1 (Syrah) - 2 weeks (the others). Fermentation is followed by two years élevage in cuve, since the family dislikes wood! No fining and filtration.

Apart from a Côtes du Rhône rouge, a Vacqueyras blanc and rosé, the domaine has five individual red cuvées including two cuvées spéciales: Vacqueyras Cuvée des Templiers (some 80% 30-40 years old Syrah and 20% Grenache), Cuvée de Saint Roch (65% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 15% Cinsault), Gigondas Cuvée de la Tour Sarrazine, Gigondas Cuvée Prestige and finally, Vacqueyras Cuvée Grenat Noble made from old vines in Clos des Cazaux in excellent years.

This is a top domaine making full, intense and firmly concentrated wines which need some 5-6 years cellaring to demonstrate their potential. Our selections include Cuvée des Templiers and if available, Cuvée Grenat Noble.