Clos Signadore

Corsica / France

At A Glance

Winemaker(s)

Christophe Ferrandis

Appellation

Patrimonio

Varieties

Vermentino, Nielluccio

Farming

Organic

Their Story

“My philosophy is to do well with what nature gives us. Producing genuine wines that tell the story of where they come from, all the while having the “soul” of the maker.” — Christophe Ferrandis

After purchasing 4 hectares of vines in 2001, Christophe Ferrandis founded the Clos Signadore domaine which is now comprised of 8.5 hectares (2 hectares of Vermentino and 6.5 hectares of Nielluccio) within the Patrimonio appellation of Corsica. Last year, in 2016, Christophe planted an additional 2.5 hectares on Corsica’s east coast after loosing 1.5 hectares of old vines due to extreme floodling in 2016. As of 2016, the domaine is now 10 hectares in size.

Mid Post Image
Old vine Nielluccio runs deep into a mix of blue and red clay and limestone. Known locally as "Calcaire bréchique."

Surrounded by mountains filled with limestone to the East and schist to the West, Christophe organically farms Vermentino and Nielluccio; taking a methodical approach in his vineyards. With a focus on expressing the appellation’s unique terroir, each of Christophe’s wines walk the line of elegance and masculinity especially when showcasing the native Nielluccio grape variety. The domaine has been ECOCERT certified organic since 2010.

All vineyard work is done by hand and is guided by lunar cycles. Christophe’s work is meticulous and he takes great pride in the health of his old vines. Yields are very small around 20-25 hectoliters per hectare for the Clos Signadore rouge and 30 to 40 hectoliters per hectare for the A Mandria cuvées. The old vines were planted using massale selection. After Christophe purchased the old vines, he expanded the domaine by planting young vine Vermentino and Niellucio by “racines longues” or the “own rooted” method.

In the cellar, only indigenous yields are used and fermentation occurs in stainless steel tank. Élevage for A Mandria blanc, rosé, and rouge is in stainless steel, and élevage for Clos Signadore rouge is 24 months in a combination of used Burgundy 500L barrique and demi-muids. Christophe purchases his barrels new and uses them for two cuvées which he does not export to give them use before they are used for Clos Signadore rouge.

Interview with Christophe Ferrandis, Owner and Winemaker of Clos Signadore

WHERE WERE YOU BORN AND RAISED? I was raised in Marseille, far from any viticulture region, but my grandfather was a winemaker. I think that my grandmother’s stories from this time, which no longer exists, subconsciously brought to the world of wine. IF YOU COULD BRIEFLY DESCRIBE YOUR APPROACH IN THE VINEYARD WHAT WOULD IT BE? My philosophy is to do well with what nature gives us. Producing genuine wines that tell the story of where they come from, all the while having the “soul” of the maker. WHAT EXCITES YOU MOST ABOUT YOUR VINEYARDS? All aspects of my work inspire me, however it’s always a big thrill for me during the periods of harvest and vinification, when we can safely put our grapes away; But at the same time another history is born, that of the wine and of the vintage. IF YOU COULD SAY ONE THING TO THE SOMMELIERS WHO ARE INTRODUCING PEOPLE TO YOUR WINES FOR THE FIRST TIME, WHAT WOULD IT BE? Genuine, dynamic, and fresh wines. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TYPE OF MUSIC? I like all kinds of music; I don’t like choosing, I like the ones that convey emotions, that resonate with me. IF YOU COULD HAVE ANY SUPERHERO POWER, WHAT WOULD YOU CHOOSE? Patience, or time travel, but I think it’s kind of the same thing.