Morandé | Maipo Valley, Chile
Pablo Morandé, previously the winemaker for Concha y Toro, had already made such wines as Don Melchor, Chile’s first icon wine, before he decided to create his own eponymous label Morandé in 1996. It was no surprise that within a short period of time this new venture had found recognition both domestically and internationally with the Wine Enthusiast magazine naming Morandé as "Winery of the Year" in 1999 and Wine & Spirits Magazine naming them "Vineyard of the Year" in 2002. Pablo was also named "Best Winemaker of the Year" twice in three years.
Today, Morandé is part of Grupo Belén, one of Chile's largest and most successful wine groups. Pablo Morandé continues to be involved with the winemaking duties alongside the talented and highly respected award winning winemaker Ricardo Baettig.
Morandé was the pioneer of the Casablanca Valley, where Pablo Morandé was the first to recognise the unique attributes and potential of this cool-climate region. They also led the way in reviving old viticultural regions such as Maulé and Itata, working with old, dry-farmed bush vines and unconventional varieties such as Carignan, País, Cinsault, Grenache and Malbec.
The constant desire to find areas that best suit each grape variety has led Morandé to diversify their vineyards between different valleys and therefore, each wine comes from a specific, single valley. The two main estates are Belen Estate in the Casablanca Valley and Romerol Estate in the Maipo Valley. The other three estates are located in the Cachapoal Valley, Curico Valley and Maipo Valley. The state-of-the-art winery is based in the Rapel Valley.
The Morandé Pionero Reserva range is of incredibly high quality for entry level wines and the examples from Casablanca Valley are undoubtedly some of the best wines in the region.