Meet the Makers: Discussion with Sustainable Winemakers

Meet the Makers: Discussion with Sustainable Winemakers
Meet the Makers: Discussion with Sustainable Winemakers


Chile, New Zealand, Australia and Paso Robles are some of the most sustainable winemaking countries in the world. So who are the winemakers behind these incredible wines?

In this dynamic discussion between winemakers and sustainable wine professionals of countries across the globe, attendees will get an insider’s-look into the world of sustainable winemaking today, how the industry impacts our environment, and the future of wine. The discussion will cover topics such as energy and water use, social impacts, and new technologies driving the sustainability efforts of these winemakers and their wineries.

Host - Adam Teeter

Adam founded VinePair with Josh with one simple goal: create a publication he actually wanted to read in a space he was extremely passionate about. Since founding the publication Adam has become recognized as an authority on how to make the drinks world accessible to everyone as well as on the ever evolving media landscape. He is the winner of the Left Bank Bordeaux Cup American Wine-Tasting Championship and holds an MBA from NYU Stern.

Guest - Aurelio Montes of Chile

After graduating with a degree in Agricultural Engineering from the Catholic University of Chile in 1972, Aurelio Montes began his winemaking career at Viña Undurraga, where he rose to the position of Head Winemaker. During that time, Aurelio experimented with new techniques and wine styles, and had the opportunity to travel extensively and visit other wine producing countries. In 1978, he joined the American Society of Enology and Viticulture. In 1984, Aurelio was invited to join Viña San Pedro, as Head Winemaker and Operations Manager, where he led efforts to raise the quality and recognition of their wines at both national and international levels. His 1986 San Pedro Sauvignon Blanc was the first white wine from Chile ever to receive a gold medal at Vinexpo, in 1987. In that year, Aurelio also took the big step of breaking with convention and setting up his own winery, with a vision, and a passion, for making fine wines of the highest quality. He and three like-minded partners founded Discover Wine, which later became Viña Montes. The launch of the first vintage of Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon, acknowledged as Chile’s first ‘premium wine’, changed the direction of Chile’s wine industry. Today, Viña Montes is one of Chile’s foremost wineries, renowned for the quality of its sustainably-produced wines, distributed globally across more than 110 countries.

Guest - Louisa Rose of Yalumba

Louisa grew up and was educated in Melbourne, spending weekends in the YarraValley helping out on the family vineyard. She completed a Bachelor of Science degree, majoring in physics, from Melbourne University and then relocated to South Australia and to Roseworthy Campus of The University of Adelaide, to study winemaking, graduating as dux in 1992.
She worked the 1992 vintage as a cellar hand at Yalumba, Australia’s oldest family owned winemaker, in the Barossa, and returned to join the team in 1993. Twenty eight vintages later, Louisa has been involved in almost every facet of viticulture, winemaking, and management which led her to accepting the role of chief winemaker in 2006. Particular focuses for Louisa have been the developmental work with Viognier and other alternative varieties, sustainability, and the use of natural (wild or feral) yeast and bacteria to make the wines. Under Louisa’s stewardship all Yalumba wines, from vintage 2012, are made without the use of animal based fining agents – making them ‘vegan’ wines.

Jason Haas of Tablas Creek Vineyard & Paso Robles Wine Country

Jason Haas is the second-generation proprietor of Tablas Creek, serving as Partner and General Manager. Son of Vineyard Brands founder (and Tablas Creek co-founder) Robert Haas, Jason grew up in the wine business, spending two summers working at Château de Beaucastel. After obtaining a Master's Degree in Archaeology from Cornell and spending four years managing a tech company in DC, Jason moved to California to join Tablas Creek in 2002. Jason is President of the Rhone Rangers board of directors, past Chairman of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance, and a board member of Free the Grapes. His writing has been published in Wine Business Monthly, Wines & Vines, Decanter, Wine Industry Network, and Zester Daily. In recognition of his contributions to the Paso Robles wine community, he was voted by his peers as the 2015 Paso Robles Wine Country Wine Industry Person of the Year and as the 2017 San Luis Obispo County Wine Industry Person of the Year.

Ed Massey of New Zealand Winegrowers

In September 2019 Ed Massey took the role of General Manager Sustainability at New Zealand Winegrowers. His team is responsible for the implementation of the wine industry Environment Strategy to protect and enhance the industry’s reputation as a world leader in sustainable production. He joined NZW in January 2016 as Biosecurity and Emergency Response Manager where he played a key role in the development and implementation of the wine industry biosecurity strategy. Prior to that he worked for central government between 2005 and 2015, first in fisheries management and from 2010 in biosecurity response. He completed a PhD in Geography from Auckland University where he first developed a passion for sustainable resource management. He is originally from Auckland but is currently based in Blenheim – New Zealand’s largest wine growing region.