The vineyards of Corsica, proud of its grape varieties
Turquoise water, steep cliffs, typical villages, a fauna and flora preserved... and a vineyard including Corsica can be proud. Renaissance since the 1990s, the vineyard of Corsica takes advantage of all the natural wealth of the island. It has about 5 700 hectares, which take place on the coast, between the Mediterranean Sea and mountains. If rosé wines dominate the Corsican wine production, the many vines, native and imported, are at the origin of wines red and white wines.
The Corsican vineyards has 9 names, spread along the coast and on the two departments that are Haute-Corse and Corse-du-Sud. Bastia in the North to Bonifacio in the South of Ajaccio in the West at Aleria on the East via Calvi, Propriano, Sartène, Figari, Porto-Vecchio and Corte, these are multiple terroirs to marked identity which give rise to varied wines.
The typical grapes of the region are:
- The nielluccio (or niellucciu): he is famous for the red wines of Patrimonio, to the North. It is found in almost all other Corsican appellations; It represents more than 30%of the vineyard.
- The sciaccarello (or sciaccarellu): it's a grape found only on the island of beauty and whose name means "cute". It is cultivated mainly in southwestern Corsica, Ajaccio and Sartène.
- The vermentino (or whites): also known as malvoisie of Corsica, he is originally from dry white wines of high quality.
Many other varieties fit in assemblies of Corsican wines: white and black, carcajolo bianco gentile, aleatico, paga debiti, barbarossa, white ugni, rossola... Carignan, cinsault, grenache, Mourvèdre and syrah are also regularly invited in the red wines of Corsica.
Corsica has 9 appellations, which occupy some 3,000 hectares: a regional AOC, two vintages, six Villages appellations and a natural sweet wine (VDN) designation. More than half of the wine production is devoted to roses; the reds however represent about 30%of the production, followed by whites and in small proportion, by the muscats.
Regional appellation wine of Corsica
These are the most common full-bodied wines. Their production is limited to the coast is the island of Bastia to Solenzara through Aleria. The AOC Corse is also North of Corte, in the inner Valley of the Golo. Wines from the three colors make up the offer with a large preponderance left to roses, particularly famous.
Two iconic names of Corsica are vintages produced in the North and South of the island:
- AOC Patrimonio: this is probably the best known AOC of the Corsican vineyards. She is originally from the North of the island and is rooted to the foot of the Cap Corse, southwest of Bastia. The vermentino to produce exclusive, whites dry, fruity and floral, while the nielluccio, grown here in abundance, gives red wines rich and detailed. Roses are for their part among the best in the region.
- AOC Ajaccio: in the South-West of the island, this appellation area unfolds all around Ajaccio, the Gulf of Porto to Sartène. It is the region of the quintessential sciaccarello. Whites are for their part from essentially the vermentino.
The Villages appellations
The Corsica AOC account different geographical denominations, each with a well marked identity:
- AOC Calvi Corsica: this is one of the oldest soils of Corsica. To the Northwest of the island, in the Balagne region, are produced pink wines, as well as aromatic white wines and red wines, full-bodied, all with a strong personality. The vermentino dominates white side and side red, usually found sciaccarello, niellucio and grenache blends.
- AOC Corse Coteaux of the Cap Corse: on the long and narrow peninsula that extends the region of Bastia are produced dry white wines from the vermentino grape and reds of custody from the Corsican traditional varietals.
- AOC Corse Figari: it is a very small region located in the southernmost part of Corsica of the South. It is also the oldest vineyard on the island. The harshness of the climate and the local grape varieties give birth to floral white wine, sharp rose wines and structured red wines.
- AOC Corse Porto-Vecchio: Southeast of the island, this appellation area extends from Bonifacio to Solenzara and Porto-Vecchio. On this arid land are cultivated the vines nielluccio and sciaccarello, which traditionally are assembled by the grenache to compose elegant red wine and aromatic rosés. The whites are dry and fruity and come mainly from the vermentino.
- AOC Corse Sartène: this appellation extends to the South-West of the island, around Sartène and Propriano. Are produced wines in three colors.
VDN Muscat of the Cap Corse appellation
It is considered to be one of the best muscats of the world. Muscat Cap Corse AOC is exclusively produced with the muscat grape to small grains. This natural sweet wine is produced in Corsica, in 17 municipalities.
The wines of country/IGP
Finally, the IGP island has roses, as well as the reds and whites. They are produced in both departments and represent a large part of the full-bodied wines. Majority the historical grape varieties of the region are exploited to produce these wines that gain progressively in quality. They are supplemented by continental varieties such as the Chardonnay, merlot, pinot noir and grenache and syrah, to name a few.