César Morales is the Winemaking Manager at the Chilean Winery, Emiliana. César manages the vineyards, harvests and blendings. He is also heavily involved in producing some fantastic wines such as the Reserva Especial lines, as well as the organic Adobe and Novas wines.
César has been an important pillar in the incredible transformation that the Emiliana Vineyards have been through. César has headed the enormous changes regarding the viniculture processes, from a conventional management to what it is now: a complete organic and biodynamic management in every line.
1994 – César studied at the University of Chile, graduating with a degree in Agricultural Engineering and a specialization in Enology.
1998-2001 – Participated in grape harvests in Concha y Toro, Errazuriz and Corpora vineyards.
2001 – César joined Emiliana Vineyards.
2002 – Visited South African vineyards: Stellenbosch and Constansia.
2003 – Visited vineyards in Bordeaux area.
2004 – Joined the Italian grape harvest in Montalcino, Castello Banfi.
2006 – César is named Viniculture Manager at Emiliana Vineyards. He assumed the whole transformation of this vineyard, in order to achieve recognition as the biggest and best known Organic and Biodynamic wine producer in the world.
More than a decade ago, brothers Jose and Rafael Guilisati began the visionary process of converting a traditional Chilean vineyard into one that was 100% organic with minimal environmental impact through the practice of Organic and Biodynamic agriculture. Their objective was to create wines that would compete in quality with any wine in the world while respecting the cycles of nature. Now, ten years on, what began as a dream has become a complete and varied portfolio of the highest quality wines.
In the past four years alone, Emiliana has seen a seven-fold increase in its sales of wines made with organically grown grapes, and during the same time period, distribution expanded from 28 to 43 countries.
Emiliana has 600 hectares of organic and biodynamic vineyards certified by IMO (Switzerland) and Demeter (Germany), as well as another 600 hectares in the process of certification, giving a total of 1200 hectares of company-owned vineyards in Maipo, Colchagua, Casablanca, Bio-Bio and Cachapoal valleys.
What César says:
“Emiliana`s transformation process has filled me with joy for its integration of people, the consistency and quality of its wines, and the understanding that the spirit must not be overlooked in material processes”. César Morales
What Andrew says:
“César bears some resemblance to a giant teddy bear: he’s big, jolly, cuddly and ebulient. But you shouldn’t let his playful exterior convince you that underneath all of that fur does not beat a passionate heart. And that passion is for wine. He has really cut his teeth at Emiliana, under the equally-driven eye of one of our great heroes, Alvaro Espinosa. Both are very well schooled in organic and biodynamic viticulture, and a visit to their manor always features wandering llamas, strange fertilising organic preparations, strutting cocks and the fullest diversity of flora between the vine rows. What better playground for César to bring his magical wines to life. He loves the purity and intensity that these vines can give to the wines, wines untethered from the sinking stone of intensive agriculture. He is also a keen drinker, always last to bed after helping out at our wine tastings in the UK. So he’s a rare thing, a great winemaker, committed to non-interventionalist winemaking, who comes without a sniff of attitude or arrogance. An all round top dog.” Andrew Baker
Q&A With Cesar Morales
What is your greatest achievement and why?
“Actively and tenaciously participating in Viña Emiliana’s transformation towards an organic culture. Although it has been a long road, I feel that we have made a lot of progress and that we are recognized worldwide as an organic alternative for winegrowing and winemaking, and that makes us very proud.”
Where’s your favourite place in the world and why?
“Colchagua (Chile). It has everything a person needs to be happy: vast extensions of land with vineyards that change colors with each season, animals that graze on green grass, mountains with imposing native forests, and peace and beauty, which are necessary for finding inspiration.”
What the best thing that someone has ever said to you about a bottle of your wine?
“Someone once told me that he saw, met, and fell in love with the woman of his dreams while drinking my wine.”
You are up a mountain in the advance stages of hypothermia – what’s the bottle?
“Definitely a bottle of young Adobe Sauvignon blanc. At that altitude, they would have already stopped looking for me, so I would just have to take advantage of the low temperature and altitude and drink the entire bottle, because the body may be cold, the spirit, Never!”
Describe one human characteristic that you love most in your wines?
“It’s hard to name just one, but I want my wines to have a life of their own, that they be recognizable, like people, so I try to make sure they have many different qualities: impetus, sarcasm, tenderness. In the end, each wine is an experience filled with emotions.”
- Coyam, one of the iconic wines of Emiliana Vineyards, was recognised as the Best Red Blend of Chile at the Wine Tasting Round Table held by LA CAV (Wine Lover’s Club) in January 2010