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2021 Patrimonio Rouge “Carco”

Antoine-Marie Arena
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This deep, tannic, long Corsican rouge is a good reminder that a big red can still be a fun red. After a bit of aeration, you’ll find this Niellucciu to be loaded with flavor, with a stony finish that leaves you always wanting more.The Carco vineyard is now legendary in Patrimonio, the Arena family having consistently provided some of the top wines the appellation has to offer from these vines since they revived and replanted the fallow ground in 1987. 

Chris Santini

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Technical Information
Wine Type: red
Vintage: 2021
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: Niellucciu
Appellation: Patrimonio
Country: France
Region: Corsica
Producer: Antoine-Marie Arena
Winemaker: Antoine-Marie Arena
Vineyard: 2 ha, planted in 1987
Soil: Limestone, chalk, clay
Farming: Organic (certified)
Alcohol: 13%

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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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Terroirs

Great winemakers, great terroirs, there is never any hurry. And I no longer buy into this idea of “peak” maturity. Great winemakers, great terroirs, their wines offer different pleasures at different ages.

Inspiring Thirst, page 312

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