Making the wine of angels

“It is not just a winery run by Irish people learning the ropes, this is Irish winemaking genius, creating some of the world’s finest wines”

WINES OF DOMAINE DES ANGES – Tom Clancy

Domaine des Anges, Rouge, Cotes de Ventoux 2005, (88)
This wine is made from grapes that come from several different vineyards. It is a blend of syrah and grenache, which are vinified separately – the syrah would be in barrels of its own for a few months before being blended. The wine is about 75 per cent syrah, 25 per cent grenache and is smooth, very lightly tannic with just a trace of perfumed heathers. A soft and luscious wine.

Domaine des Anges, Blanc, Cotes de Ventoux 2006, (89)
This white wine in the entry level outshines the red. With its traditional Marsanne and Rousanne blend fermented in oak, it is wonderfully exotic, oily and lightly spicy at the finish.

Domaine des Anges, Rose, Cotes de Ventoux 2006, (88)
The rose wine was mentioned recently in the ‘3 to buy’ section. That was the 2005 and is currently tasting the slightly better wine. Unfortunately, the main stockists O’Briens is now sold out, but you may find the odd bottle here and there.
This is the new vintage, the 2006,which I’ve scored at a point off the 2005. It’s not too dramatic and still has a bit to travel in terms of maturity.

However, remember that the aim of most rose wines is freshness and vivacity – and this one is no exception, so don’t go cellaring this for a decade.

Domaine des Anges, Rouge L’Archange, Cotes de Ventoux 2004, (90)
Many consider this wine to be Rooney’s masterpiece. I beg to differ, as I think that honour goes to the white. However, this is still an ambitious wine that in a more prestigious commune only 20kmaway could fetch double or triple this price. It is made in tiny quantities, comes from 40-year-old vine blocks and is expensively made.

The syrah, for example, is aged in barriques for a year, unblended, while the grenache is aged in a stainless steel tank to emphasise the freshness of the fruit. The blend, 80 per cent syrah and 20 per cent grenache, is a super luscious, polished wine bursting with weighty dynamic dark fruits, a touch of white pepper and the telltale tar notes of southern Rhone syrah. A superb wine at a startlingly reasonable price – but for how long more?

Domaine des Anges, Blanc L’Archange, Cotes de Ventoux 2006, (91)
For me, the star of Domaine des Anges, it makes only 750 cases a year as it is a single vineyard wine. Barrel-fermented Rousanne, letting the wine sit on its lees, and ageing in oak provides the kinds of kid-glove treatment you expect of a flashy and expensive Burgundy.

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