Andrew Guard

2015 Vin de France Blanc 'Grotte di Sole', Jean-Baptiste Arena

From old Vermentinu vines on a southern exposure, this exhibits slightly more breadth and intensity than the Carco. In the mouth it is incisive and there is a very attractive and mouthwatering melange of bittersweet citrus oils and herbal extractions that combine with grapefruit and pineapple towards a cooling stony finish - very soothing and very refreshing. It is excellent

Antoine Arena is one of the most respected vignerons in France. Since the 1970's he, with his wife Marie, and now joined by his two sons, Antoine-Marie and Jean-Baptiste, has tirelessly worked to establish a reputation for excellence and independence showing the world what his land in Patrimonio is capable of. His is a story of hard work and success.

From 3 hectares in the beginning they have all worked with a determined approach to identifying the finest terroir and have been able to increase the size of the vineyards today to 14 hectares.

As of the 2014 vintage, the Arenas have divided their holdings evenly between Antoine, Antoine-Marie, and Jean-Baptiste. The decision came naturally: in a typically Corsican spirit of self-reliance, Antoine’s sons will carry on the family tradition through their very own domaines, enjoying the autonomy to work the way they desire while maintaining close family bonds and a free exchange of ideas.