who grows the grapes at Domaine de L’Ecu? who makes the wines?
Fred Niger has taken the reins from Guy Bossard at Domaine de L’Ecu. For decades, Guy and his wife Annie Thuaud not only made the wines, they have “made” the reputation of Muscadet Sèvre et Maine. Their rigorous approach in the vineyard and careful approach in the cellar has elevated the appellation. Fred is at once respectful of this tradition and inspired to build on it.
Fred brings a new eye to the estate and is challenging many fixed ideas. The hyper pure single vineyard Muscadets are here to stay, but the lineup is growing. Red wines made from grapes formerly dedicated to sparkling production are making a mark on the wine world. We eagerly anticipate the wines he has in his amphora, as well. This is an exciting time for winery with what some consider the best terroir in this part of France.
what wines do they make at Domaine de L’Ecu?
There are few, if any white wines that have this capacity for aging at comparable prices.
New red wines, including Ange (Pinot Noir), Red Noz (Cabernet Sauvignon), and Mephisto (Cabernet Franc) are challenging perceptions of what the region can and can not achieve. Of course the vines in this cool climate require massive amounts of work to ensure the grapes ripen. We are thrilled to have a rather large allocation of each.
When bubbles are needed, La Divina is a stunning blend of Melon de Bourgogne, Chardonnay, and Folle Blanche made entirely by hand in the “Méthode Traditionelle” like the very best Champagne. It is amazing how many layers this wine conceals when first opened. We’ve enjoyed it over multiple days after opening.
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when did Domaine de L’Ecu start? when might you open a bottle?
Pairings for the wines of Domaine de L’Ecu follow the same path as Chablis, from village level to Grand Cru. Rich, complex sauces with shellfish or roast chicken shine with the single vineyard wines when young, With age, thoughts of morels and mature hard cheeses come to mind. The “Classique” is a wine we can drink at any time and any place without hesitation. If you are a fan of Albarino, Gruner Veltliner, or Dry Riesling, you’ll likely find a friend here.
where is Domaine de L’Ecu?
At the risk of sounding obsequious, we would add that the winery is located at the top of almost every list of the exceptional wines from Muscadet, from the Loire Valley, and indeed from all of France. We doubt that Guy Bossard would make such a brash claim, but we will make it for him. We adore these wines and few people have the reputation that he has earned.
why is Domaine de L’Ecu a Candid Wine? why might you want a taste?
Candid represents Domaine de L’Ecu in Illinois thanks directly to Chartrand Imports and because we adore fine Muscadet. We believe that buying, drinking and cellaring single vineyard Muscadet from l’Ecu and La Louvetrie is like stepping in a time machine that takes us back to the early 1960’s when Grand Cru Burgundy and the very best Chablis could be had for a few dollars a bottle. These are explosively good values and we can’t sing the praises of people like Guy and Fred loudly enough.
If you have never tasted Muscadet but love white Burgundy, it’s possible that twenty years from now you will still be thanking Guy for opening your eyes to what a value and what an experience the best Muscadet is, just as we still remember our first experiences with the same wines.
how is Domaine de L’Ecu made?
Kramer is right to place the emphasis first on the treatment of the vines at Domaine de L’Ecu. After harvest, the motto in the cellar seems to be “gentler is better”. The grape clusters are not destemmed, which limits oxidization of the juice before fermentation begins. The yeasts are always native, and the wines age on their “fine lees” for up to a year, depending on vintage and cuvee. It’s as “simple” as that.
Making the red wines and the amphora fermented whites is of course a little bit different. We have an extensive series of videos with Fred in which he explains his techniques. Below, Fred discusses the farming required to produce red wines in the region.