Ajaccio wine appellation
Ajaccio is a wine appellation in Corsica, France that permits red, rose and white wines to be produced. Some of the vineyards are very high in the Corsican hills on the lower Western side of the island centered around the city of Ajaccio where the granite soils, arenaceous screes and perfectly positioned slopes overlooking the sea are particularly conducive for the production of elegant red wines and fine white wines made from the Vermentino grape.
Slopes on Corsica's west coast
It first gained AOC status in 1971, however as far back as 1851 when Cyrus Redding wrote his fascinating 'A History and Description of Modern Wine' he mentioned Ajaccio as being a particularly noteworthy area for the production of wine.
The red wines can achieve considerable finesse and distinction and are produced from the local Sciaccarellu (Sciacarello) grape which must comprise 40% of the plantings in the vineyard. This is supplemented by Barbarossa, Nielluccio and Vermentino. Small amounts of Grenache, Aleatico, Carcajolo Nero, Cinsault, Minustello and Carignan can also be used provided they are less than the specified maximum for the blend. Carignan must not exceed 15% and together Aleatico, Carcajolo Nero and Minustello must not exceed 10% of the blend.
White wines are made from Vermentino which must comprise at least 80% of the blend. It is supplemented by Ugni Blanc (known locally as Rossola), Biancu Gentile, Codivarta and Genovese which can comprise a maximum of 20%. The volume of wine produced from this appellation is not large with only a dozen or so producers in the area.