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Winemaker Lupe Maldonado’s 40 Year Wine Journey

By guest blogger, Lidia Maldonado

Lupe Maldonado came to the United States for work in the late 1960’s from a small farming community in Michoacán, Mexico. Eventually, he was able to move his family here as he had secured permanent employment in California’s wine country. Lupe spent many years working in the vineyards throughout the world famous Napa Valley, a location that would forever define his and his family’s futures. Ultimately his family settling down in the small town of St Helena.In 1971 Lupe was working for Sterling Vineyards when Peter Newton offered Lupe the opportunity to join him in an exciting new endeavor, the creation of a new winery in the Spring Mountain District of St. Helena.

Lupe’s dedication and hard work were beginning to pay off as he was soon named vineyard manager for Newton Vineyard. With Newton, Lupe found a home where he proudly dedicated all his energy for over thirty years. His son Hugo succeeded him at Newton Vineyard in 1999 after graduating from UC Davis with a degree in Enology and Viticulture.

It was this moment when Lupe realized his American Dream. After devoting three decades of wisdom to the craft of viticulture, Lupe launched a vineyard management business and acquired his own land. The parcel is a 10-acre piece of land in the coolest southern reaches of Napa Valley, in Jamieson Canyon, which he developed into his own vineyards. To this day, Lupe lives in the midst of the vines that he planted and continues to cultivate.

Today, Maldonado Vineyards is owned and run as a family business. They believe when you put your name on the label of wine, dedication to the highest quality is paramount. The family takes pride in their winery and vineyards, and that pride is steeped in appreciation for Lupe’s history and life journey.

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