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2019 Patrimonio Rouge “Cru Des Agriate”

Domaine Giacometti
Discount Eligible $26.00
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If you make a fist with your left hand and point your index finger in the air, looking at the back of your hand, you have a rough diagram of the island of Corsica. From the western base of your index finger to the knuckle of your middle finger lies one of the island’s—and France’s—most exciting appellations, Patrimonio. There lies Domaine Giacometti, specifically in the Agriates Desert, a rugged and arid stretch of northern Corsica, swept year round by a hot and dry wind called the libecciu and covered in the aromatic shrubs called maquis. There are no cities or towns here, only one hamlet with a dozen or so inhabitants and a small paved road. The Giacomettis moved here thirty-five years ago and have coaxed the vines into thriving in a difficult terrain. They make this rouge from Niellucciu and a splash of Grenache, and the result is a triumphant testament to their terroir. Pretty notes of cranberries, blackberries, and citrus coat your palate before giving way to a fine tannin and transportive flavors of the maquis that surrounds the domaine. This red is a meal unto itself, but for an ideal pairing, try rosemary lamb chops right off the grill.

Tom Wolf


Technical Information
Wine Type: red
Vintage: 2019
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: 97% Niellucciu, 3% Grenache
Appellation: Patrimonio
Country: France
Region: Corsica
Producer: Domaine Giacometti
Winemaker: Christian Giacometti
Vineyard: 10 to 45 years, 35 ha total
Soil: Clay, Granite
Aging: Aged for 10 months on fine lees in stainless steel tank
Farming: Organic (practicing)
Alcohol: 14.5%

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About The Region

Corsica

map of Corsica

I first set foot on the island in 1980. I remember looking down from the airplane window seeing alpine forest and lakes and thinking, uh oh, I got on the wrong plane. Then suddenly I was looking down into the beautiful waters of the Mediterranean. Corsica is a small, impossibly tall island, the tail of the Alp chain rising out of the blue sea.—Kermit Lynch

Kermit’s first trip to the island proved fruitful, with his discovery of Clos Nicrosi’s Vermentino. More than thirty years later, the love affair with Corsica has only grown as we now import wines from ten domaines that cover the north, south, east, and west of what the French affectionately refer to as l’Île de Beauté.

Corsica is currently experiencing somewhat of a renaissance—interest has never been higher in the wines and much of this is due to growers focusing on indigenous and historical grapes found on the island. Niellucciu, Sciarcarellu, and Vermentinu are widely planted but it is now common to find bottlings of Biancu Gentile and Carcaghjolu Neru as well as blends with native varieties like Rossola Bianca, Minustellu, or Montaneccia.

As Kermit described above, Corsica has a strikingly mountainous landscape. The granite peaks top out above 9,000 feet. The terroir is predominantly granite with the exception of the Patrimonio appellation in the north, which has limestone, clay, and schist soils.The wines, much like their southern French counterparts make for great pairings with the local charcuterie, often made from Nustrale, the native wild boar, as well as Brocciu, the Corsican goats milk cheese that is best served within 48 hours of it being made.

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Old wine bottles

Let the brett nerds retire into protective bubbles, and whenever they thirst for wine it can be passed in to them through a sterile filter. Those of us on the outside can continue to enjoy complex, natural, living wines.

Inspiring Thirst, page 236