2019 Domaine de L'Ecu 'Love & Grapes Nobis' Syrah Vin de France
Region: Rhône Valley < France
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic and certified biodynamic; fermentation and 10 months aging in stainelss steel; bottled unfined/unfiltered with minimal added So2; 14% ABV
Winemaker: Fred Niger
Juicy biodynamic Syrah from de-classified Chateauneuf-du-Pape vineyards that drinks well above its price point!
Domaine de l’Ecu has attained almost legendary status in the Loire for its influence on the region’s Muscadet. The estate was among the early adopters of organic viticulture, long before it became trendy; l’Ecu’s vineyards have been certified organic for over 40 years and certified biodynamic for over 20 years! In recent years, the domaine changed hands, as highly respected owner and natural viticulturist Guy Bossard had no heirs interested in taking over the property. L’Ecu is now run by Frederik (Fred) Niger, who is very hands-on in his commitment to maintaining the estate’s greatness, while Bossard is still around as a consultant to ensure a smooth transition. The two men share a passion bordering on fanaticism when it comes to meticulous work in the vineyards, always keeping their respect for the natural world at the forefront.
Fred is based in the Loire, but he has a small negociant project where he buys organic/biodynamic fruit from friends in other regions. Like this Syrah from de-classified Chateauneuf-du-Pape vineyards, which is savory, peppery and fruit-forward, with structure, plush tannins and bright, lively fruit. Let it breathe for a sec then watch how it evolves, with minerality, subtle meaty notes, black pepper, and black cherry/red fruit doing somersaults in your mouth. This is Syrah as it is meant to be - pure juice that is easy and drinkable with a touch of rusticity to remind you that it's natural. A slight chill here is nice, but not required.