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2022 Vin de Corse Rosé “Gris de Marquiliani”

Domaine de Marquiliani
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You don’t need to pronounce it. All you need is a corkscrew and a wineglass. I discovered this marvel the final day of last summer’s visit to Corsica, right before flying to Marseille. I’d heard of a restaurant, La Flotta, up at the base of the imposing Monte Grosso. The paved road turned to dirt then narrowed to a car’s width. Tossin’ and a-turnin’, wondering where in the . . . and then, like finding an oasis in the desert, Gail and I reached a lone little restaurant under the looming granite peak. Cows grazed the parking lot.
     The sommelier was a treat. We discussed the great domaines: Arena, Leccia, Nicrosi, Abbatucci—then she insisted we try a new wine, a young woman’s first release, a rosé: “You’d better try it today because our staff has almost drunk it all up. We didn’t even put it on our wine list,” she said.
     She poured one of the most memorable wines I’ve tasted—no, not complex and grandiose. Not powerful and earthshaking. No, au contraire. Here’s a rosé that is almost weightless. Perfumed on the nose, then an ethereal touch as it spreads across the palate, then nothing remains but that gorgeous, heavenly perfume. Yum. To know it is to love it.

Kermit Lynch

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Technical Information
Wine Type: Rosé
Vintage: 2022
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: 95% Sciaccarellu, 5% Syrah
Appellation: Vin de Corse
Country: France
Region: Corsica
Producer: Domaine de Marquiliani
Winemaker: Anne Amalric
Vineyard: 20 years average
Soil: Schist and granite gravel with silt
Aging: Fermented in stainless steel
Farming: Lutte Raisonnée
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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Inspiring Thirst

I want you to realize once and for all: Even the winemaker does not know what aging is going to do to a new vintage; Robert Parker does not know; I do not know. We all make educated (hopefully) guesses about what the future will bring, but guesses they are. And one of the pleasures of a wine cellar is the opportunity it provides for you to witness the evolution of your various selections. Living wines have ups and downs just as people do, periods of glory and dog days, too. If wine did not remind me of real life, I would not care about it so much.

Inspiring Thirst, page 171

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