Discovering Corsica’s Wine Treasures

In addition to the soft Mediterranean breeze, the mountainous landscapes, and a unique atmosphere that invites days of relaxation and introspection, the French island of Corsica is also home to one of the most valuable treasures of natural origin, wine.

The island’s connection to wine dates back to 570 B.C. when Phocean merchants planted the first grapes. Production and exportation were interrupted and restricted under Islamic rule and the Genoa reign but resumed during the era of Napoleon. 

Of the nine appellations in Corsica’s wine region, Patrimonio, located in the northernmost part of the island, is the oldest. Stretching over 425 hectares through the villages of Barbaggio, Farinole, Oletta, Patrimonio, Poggio d’Oletta, Saint Florent, and San Pietro di tenda, the Patrimonio wine region was one of the first regions in France to practice organic viticulture and to obtain AOC status. 

Its mostly clay-limestone and limestone soils, the wide temperature range between day and night, and the cold maritime wind from the Ligurian Sea give rise to full-bodied red wines and light, fruity white wines, both with a strong personality. Most winegrowers practice organic and biodynamic cultivation to ensure ecological balance and sustainability. The vineyards are divided into several small estates that benefit from different microclimates and terroirs.

corsica wine tours
wine experience at aethos corsica

One of these estates is Clos Clementi. Created in 2002 by young winemakers Antoine and Jean Pierre Clementi on a 12-hectare vineyard founded in 1936 by their grandfather Antoine Clementi, some of the best wines from the Patrimonio area come from here. Planted in “usu anticu,” according to the sun’s and wind’s orientation, the appellation’s noble varieties are nourished by a predominantly clay-limestone soil and benefit from an exceptional microclimate. The grapes are harvested entirely by hand at dawn.

Located in Oletta, in the heart of the Patrimonio wine-growing area, the boutique hotel Aethos Corsica offers its guests the chance to discover more about the local wine and thus immerse themselves in the essence and culture of the island of Corsica. During their stay, guests can visit the Clos Clementi cellars and enjoy their garden overlooking the sea and the Patrimonio vineyards while engaging in wine tasting and local delicatessen. The perfect way to complement an already unique stay. 

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