France: Corsica

Northern Corsica

Wine regions of Calvi, Patrimonio and the Cap Corse
By Tom Fiorina

This Guide was last updated on 18 July 2013
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Domaine Arena

Address: Morta Maio, 20253 Patrimonio
Tel: 04 95 37 08 27  Fax: 04 95 37 01 14
Geo-coordinates:  Latitude: 42:41:52N (42.697742)    Longitude: 9:21:6E (9.351658) 

Antoine Arena, along with his sons Jean-Baptiste and Antoine-Marie, makes some of Corsica’s finest wines. The 13ha domaine is split into three, clay-limestone parcels. The first two, Grotte di Sole, which faces due south, and Carco, which was fashioned with dynamite and pneumatic hammer-equipped back hoe by the Arena clan from a rocky outcropping, produce both white and red wines. Their hamlet, Morta Maio, provides the name for their third red wine. Arena was one of the first winemakers to begin replanting indigenous Corsican grapes, such as Biancu Gentile, and he has led the way as well with introducing organic viticulture to the island. The vines are ploughed and worked under the row with hoes, harvesting is done by hand, and all ageing of the wines is done in stainless steel vats. There’s nothing phoney here. The delicious wines and Arena’s personality are honest expressions of the unforgiving rocky soils of this beautiful corner of the island.

Useful information: There’s no tasting room here; the wines are poured right in the wine cellar. It’s imperative to call ahead for an appointment.


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