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Five minutes with Ricardo Baettig, Viña Morandé

Published:  07 February, 2023

Andrew Catchpole catches up with the man who drives the exploratory winemaking at Viña Morandé, one of Chile’s most consistently innovative producers

My view is very close to the view of the founders of Morandé, one of the reasons why they hired me, because I truly believe that less is more. I learned that working as a consultant in Europe and Italy. We’ve been innovating here since it was founded by Pablo Morandé, a highly respected winemaker in Chile, the first to plant in Casablanca and the first to put old vine Carignan in the bottle – now a fashion.  

One of the things that helped us show to the world that Chile is not just good value wines, we have an old vine heritage, which we love to show to the market and consumers. This is why we have old vine Carignan, old vine Pais, and we use Grenache we age in big foudres, not just barrqiue, so there’s always innovation. But this is mostly looking back on the past to look to the future. 

For winemakers of my age and younger it was much easier to have a 360° view and palate, compared with older generations, because travel was easier and we could learn the different realities about different appellations. Travel is key, then taste, taste, taste, not to copy, but to see the opportunities we have.

We still have much of the country to explore. It’s why we are moving south, or doing Syrah in [northern] Limari… now we are looking for regions and soils that give us dry fruit, beautiful natural acidity. We are on this path in Morandé, and the new generations are the same.