2016 Domaine de L'Ecu 'Love & Grapes Gloria' Vin de France
Region: Tuscany < Italy
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic and certified biodynamic estate fruit from a single 1 ha parcel at the Cosimo Maria Masini estate in Tuscany. South-western facing parcel on clay-limestone soils, rich in pleistoscene era fossils. Vinified at Cosimo Maria Masini by Fred's (and our) good buddy Francesco, then aged in amphora at Domaine de l'Ecu. 4 day skin maceration before pressing in pneumatic presses. Native yeast fermentation. Aged in 400 liter amphora for 9 months. No fining, filtering or sulfur added; zero-zero; 12% ABV
Winemaker: Francesco di Filippis
A unicorn Vermentino, with one foot in Italy and one in France! Certified biodynamic, skin-contact, aged in amphora, zero-zero deliciousness!
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 started a small negociant project where he buys organic/biodynamic fruit from friends in other regions after losing most of his crop in the 2016 harvest. Like this Vermentino from his buddy (and ours), Francesco at certified organic/biodynamic estate, Cosimo Maria Masini, near the Tuscan coast. Francesco gives it the orange treatment, with 4 days on the skins, then hauls it to Fred's estate in the Loire to rest in amphora for 9 months.
And what a pretty wine this Gloria is. More yellow than orange in color, it's a very light skin-contact wine, with just 4 days on the skins. The skin maceration seems to intensify the saltiness of this Vermentino. The grape is salty in general, and more so here, just 20km from the Tuscan coast. It also gives the wine a lovely, rich, almost oily texture and amps up the fruit, which often hides behind the minerality and salinity of Vermentino. Ripe pear, white flowers, wet rocks and that persistant, dominant saltiness. So pretty, this Gloria...