Domaine de l’Ecu, 2015 Update

As is now almost customary my annual report on the latest releases from Domaine de l’Ecu takes in two tastings, the first with Frédéric ‘call me Fréd’ Niger and Guy Bossard in Anjou, the second with Fred flying solo in London. As usual this means I have had the opportunity to taste one or two wines twice, in particular the Muscadets which for me have always been the real draw here. Some wines, however, I tackled only once, in particular the red wines, now part of an increasingly complex array of amphora-aged wines dressed up in kaleidoscopically coloured labels. Before I get to the wines though, a quick recap on the domaine, and my thoughts on these two seemingly quite distinct parts to the Ecu portfolio.

Domaine de l'Ecu

Frédéric Niger (pictured above) arrived at the domaine in 2011, a new partner for Guy Bossard, a doyen of the Muscadet vineyard who was looking to retire but lacked the one thing every aging vigneron really hopes for, an able-bodied, energetic and interested son or daughter to take on the family business. Under Guy’s direction, Muscadet was always king, while his red wines were secondary interests which were rarely poured at tastings. Since his arrival, however, Fred has directed a not inconsequential amount of his energy towards Guy’s other varieties and wines. The three classic Muscadet cuvéesGranite, Gneiss and Orthogneiss – which we all know and love (well, I do, anyway) now feel like something of a sideline, overshadowed by Fred’s many funk-filled cuvées, amphora-aged Folle de Blanche and other such curiosities, all presented in fat bottles adorned with psychedelic labels and colour-matched wax capsules.

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