B-21 Top Recommendation
Xavier Angles of Domaine du Bois Saint Jean is rightly considered a pioneer in the Côtes-du-Rhône-Villages appellation of Gadagne, but he would more likely describe his appellation as “small, but mighty.” He and his brother Vincent make the outstanding 2017 Gadagne Comte d’Ust from primarily Syrah, grown on their 30 hectares of 40 yr. old vines near Chateauneuf de Gadagne in the Vaucluse. As one of only seven producers in the small Gadagne AOC, the enigmatic Xavier led the charge to have the area’s unique terroir recognized as a named Villages for nearly 10 years, accomplishing this feat in 2012. Just 15 kilometers east of Avignon, the Village’s soil mimics neighboring Chateauneuf du Pape located just across the Ouvèze river to its north, with underlying chalk and clay covered with the rolled stones known as “galets roules.”
While the Anglès family has been established in Gadagne since 1650, their first vineyards were planted in the early 1900’s by the great-grandfather of Xavier and Vincent. The estate was officially formed by 1986, and has since established a stellar reputation for winemaking, including the exceptional 2016 Vacqueyras la Ballade des Angles, rated 94 pts. and named “one of the best of the vintage” according to the Wine Advocate.
Decanter’s Andrew Jefford calls the Gadagne AOC the “other Chateauneuf” producing “wines of powerful personality, with a force, an energy and an intensity to them.” The esteemed Le Guide Hachette declares “One of the little-known villages worth the detour on the strength of this cuvée. Young and powerful, the palate offers flesh, length and balance around firm tannins which argue well for aging.” The 2017 Domaine du Bois Saint Jean Gadagne Compte d'Ust is a Cotes du Rhone lovers dream, featuring full bodied ripe dark fruit with nuances of cedar, spice and the signature garrigue, finishing with velvet tannins - and at a fraction of the price of wines from the “other” Chateauneuf, a rocking value.