An Independent Streak

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Corsicans are known as an independent lot. As individual as some of the French island's terroirs.

"In Corsican, we have an expression: A terre e fatta a palmi," says Yves Leccia, a key figure in the renaissance of Corsica's Patrimonio appellation over the past 37 years. "It means everywhere you put your hand down, the earth changes."

Leccia is standing in his prized E Croce vineyard, in which a layer of chalky limestone soil covers schistic bedrock. The vineyard—like his Partinelone vineyard a couple of hundred yards away—nestles in a cirque surrounded by rocky peaks. Between two humpbacked ridges to the west, you can glimpse the turquoise Mediterranean waters of the Gulf of St.-Florent. A dry wind from the west—known locally as the libeccioventilates the vineyards on a clear sunny morning.

This extraordinary terroir motivated Leccia in 2004 to split off from his family's domaine (now owned by his sister, Annette) and to launch his own Yves Leccia Domaine d'E Croce the following year.

"I always wanted to look for new cuvées and to experiment," explains Leccia, who found working en famille too confining.

When dividing up the family holdings, Leccia took two of his favorite vineyards, E Croce and Partinelone, so that he could focus on these sites in a single, higher-end bottling....read the ful blog at winespectator.com