Two bottles of DAKÉL Wine
Two bottles of DAKÉL Wine

CHARDONNAY AND PINOT NOIR FROM COOL, COASTAL VINEYARDS LOCATED IN THE SHADOW OF CHILE’S ANDES MOUNTAINS.

Current Release

Request an Allocation

We invite you to explore DAKÉL Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from Chile’s Itata Valley—a winemaking passion project from the celebrated winemaking team of Andres Sanchez, Randy Ullom, and Don Hartford. DAKÉL roughly translates as "to woo"—which is exactly what this cool climate Chilean region did when the trio set out to find the best terroir for creating extraordinary, site-reflective Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in Chile.DAKÉL Star

About DAKÉL

DAKÉL’s Maricerro Vineyard Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are extraordinary expressions of Chilean Single Vineyard terroir. The Maricerro Vineyard sits on a Coastal ridge at almost 1,000 feet in elevation sandwiched between the cold Pacific Ocean and nearby frigid Andean Mountain tops. The Vineyard’s quartz laced granitic soil and cool climate drive a bright and unique crystalline signature in both wines.

The wines are the result of three winemaking colleagues’ decades-long search for a pure single vineyard expression of Chilean Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

In the early 1990’s, DAKÉL Winemaker Andres Sanchez, and Vintner friends and colleagues Randy Ullom and Don Hartford, began searching in the direction of the Antarctic on the Coastal Ridges of Chile in hopes of finding an extraordinary site for producing world-class Pinot and Chardonnay. After several false hopes and dead-ends, Maricerro was planted in the Itata region. The first vines planted at Maricerro are now 14 years old and just beginning to tell the story of the remarkable Maricerro site.

DAKÉL Vineyard DAKÉL Vineyard DAKÉL Vineyard

"There’s a lot of real passion to elevate Chile, without losing the identity."

–Andrés Sánchez, Winemaker

The Wines

Dake Chardonnay

2019 Chardonnay

At harvest, the grapes are hand-picked and placed into small boxes. In the winery, they are pressed as whole clusters to minimize skin contact time and to allow for a smoother, less phenolic finish. The juice is gravity-racked into medium toast barrels for 100% malolactic fermentation and aged for 12 months in 10% new French oak.

Winemaker Notes: DAKÉL’s Chardonnay expresses delicate aromas of apple, citrus blossom and crème brûlée. On the palate, the creaminess is balanced by an exuberant minerality and freshness that creates a perfect tension in this wine. The luxurious texture is complemented by flavors of honeydew melon, star fruit and a persistent saline finish that reflects the vineyard’s proximity to the sea.

92 points Tim Atkin, Decanter November 2021
DAKÉL Pinot Noir

2019 Pinot Noir

At harvest, the grapes are hand-picked and placed into small boxes. After destemming, the grapes undergo a five-day cold soak in stainless steel tanks, followed by twice daily punchdowns. The juice is fermented until dry, after which the grape skins are pressed off the wine, which is placed in 10% new French oak to age for 12 months.

Winemaker Notes: DAKÉL’s Pinot Noir expresses the elegance and intensity of coastal Pinot Noir from the granitic soils of our estate vineyard. The nose exhibits a tsunami of red and black fruits: cranberry, blackberry, and raspberry, balanced by wild rose petal aromas. A chalky texture and beautiful minerality enhance the concentration of these flavors, which persist on the palate.

92 points Tim Atkin, Decanter November 2021
DAKÉL Vineyard DAKÉL Vineyard DAKÉL Vineyard

The Vineyard

Viñedo Maricerro

Planted to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Viñedo Maricerro or Maricerro Vineyard lies in hills of the Cordillera de la Costa mountains – a gently receding, older range juxtaposed against the younger Andes. The name Maricerro pays homage to the nearby Pacific (mar means sea in Spanish) and the Andes Mountains (cerro translates to hill), which serve as a backdrop to the nearly 30 acres of hand-cultivated Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes.

The vineyard was intentionally planted at the top of the hill to intercept the cool breezes coming off the Pacific Ocean, a short 12 miles away. Farmed according to California sustainability practices, the vineyard has small white quartz rocks as well as red granitic soils that are porous and low in organic material, which keep the vine roots dry and forces them to struggle for nutrients. The vines are spaced at medium density and trellised with the Guyot and Double Guyot method – systems designed not only to protect the plants from frost, but also best for vines that produce lower yields of higher-quality grapes. During ripening season, temperatures range from 75° F during the day to 53° F at night. These conditions combine to impart intense flavor, fruit, minerality, and a touch of salinity in the grapes for a uniquely elegant style of wine.

The People
Andrés Sánchez | Don Hartford | Randy Ullom

Andrés Sánchez

Andres Sanchez

A native Chilean, Andrés has made it his mission to produce wines that would eloquently convey the story of the country’s terroir. He has forged an international reputation as one of South America’s most talented and well-travelled winemakers. After earning an agronomy degree, he began his career at Domain Oriental Winery in Chile. Subsequently, he worked with Randy Ullom and served as winemaker at both Viña Calina and Alcance wineries. Andrés credits his past winemaking experiences in Argentina, California and Italy for helping him to understand Chile’s potential. As one of the founders of VIGNO, an organization dedicated to the preservation of old-vine Carignan in Chile, Andrés is passionate about the expression of terroir. For him, DAKÉL embodies the pinnacle of quality.

Don Hartford

Don Hartford

Following a successful law career, Don worked alongside the late famed vintner Jess Jackson to build the Jackson Family Wines empire, while also becoming a widely regarded Chardonnay and Pinot Noir specialist with his eponymously named Hartford Family Winery in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County. Don’s interest in Chile goes back to his and Jess Jackson’s view that Chile is “California inverted” and harbors immense winemaking potential for Burgundian varieties.

Randy Ullom

Randy Ullom

It was during a three-year college sabbatical trekking through Chile’s winegrowing regions that Randy realized he wanted to be a winemaker. His lifelong travel bug eventually landed him at California’s Kendall-Jackson winery in 1993, where he still makes wine to this day. One of his first assignments at Kendall-Jackson was to establish a presence in Chile, where he met the astute and enthusiastic, Andrés Sánchez. Later, Randy and Andrés joined forces to oversee the winemaking process at Chile’s Viña Calina and Alcance wineries. Randy’s expertise in the cultivation and production of Chardonnay is unrivalled.

Andres Sanchez

Andrés Sánchez

A native Chilean, Andrés has made it his mission to produce wines that would eloquently convey the story of the country’s terroir. He has forged an international reputation as one of South America’s most talented and well-travelled winemakers. After earning an agronomy degree, he began his career at Domain Oriental Winery in Chile. Subsequently, he worked with Randy Ullom and served as winemaker at both Viña Calina and Alcance wineries. Andrés credits his past winemaking experiences in Argentina, California and Italy for helping him to understand Chile’s potential. As one of the founders of VIGNO, an organization dedicated to the preservation of old-vine Carignan in Chile, Andrés is passionate about the expression of terroir. For him, DAKÉL embodies the pinnacle of quality.

Don Hartford

Don Hartford

Following a successful law career, Don worked alongside the late famed vintner Jess Jackson to build the Jackson Family Wines empire, while also becoming a widely regarded Chardonnay and Pinot Noir specialist with his eponymously named Hartford Family Winery in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County. Don’s interest in Chile goes back to his and Jess Jackson’s view that Chile is “California inverted” and harbors immense winemaking potential for Burgundian varieties.

Randy Ullom

Randy Ullom

It was during a three-year college sabbatical trekking through Chile’s winegrowing regions that Randy realized he wanted to be a winemaker. His lifelong travel bug eventually landed him at California’s Kendall-Jackson winery in 1993, where he still makes wine to this day. One of his first assignments at Kendall-Jackson was to establish a presence in Chile, where he met the astute and enthusiastic, Andrés Sánchez. Later, Randy and Andrés joined forces to oversee the winemaking process at Chile’s Viña Calina and Alcance wineries. Randy’s expertise in the cultivation and production of Chardonnay is unrivalled.