The family that runs the oil trade is investing heavily in WINE

Last name Urquia is closely related to Argentine agribusiness: the family, originally from Córdoba, led by Roberto Urquía, commands the General Deheza Oil Group (AGD)one of the giants when it comes to the production and export of oils and grains.

According to data published by the company, three out of every ten liters of bottled oil shipped to the world from Argentina carry the AGD seal.

It is also a company that, in addition to trading commodities, also: adds added value from a well-diversified portfolioincluding well-known brands of olive oil, dressings (mayonnaise and ketchup) and peanuts in various sizes.

And to this long list of foods we need to add one more product: wines. It is that the Urquía family has just presented itself in society his winery, called Urqo, and his first wines with his own brand: Palo Santo.

It should be clear that the family chose the wine industry a long time ago. In fact, 15 years ago they bought the first farms, located in the Uco Valley; while in 2016 they built the basement with a storage capacity of 3 million liters and state-of-the-art technology.

Until now, however, they produced and exported wines in bulk (without branding) and produced for third parties. So the launch of their bottled and private label wines represent a turning point in the family history in this industry.

Family wines: Dolores Urquía is in command of the Urqo winery, with a focus on the Uco Valley

“We took over the first of the farms, in Tupungato, 15 years ago. And we decided to start this business because we really wanted it and also admired it. It’s a company that has always interested us and that’s why we decided to hand in hand with our agronomist, Gustavo Soto, who has been with us from the beginning and advised us to choose the best terroirs,” he explains to iProfesional Dolores Urquiaowner of the winery with her sisters Soledad, Cecilia and Lucía and her father, Roberto.

Wines with a focus on the Uco Valley

The name “Urqo” is a play on words between the family name and Valle de Uco, where the winery and the three farms are located, which add up to more than 250 hectares and are located in some of the great hot spots for world class wine production: Tupungato, Gualtalary and the Chacayes.

70% of the acreage is intended for the production of: Malbecwhile the remaining 30% is distributed among the races Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Although the family prefers not to give numbers, Dolores emphasizes that it “an important investmentwithout a doubt, including the purchase of land, the planting of the vineyards and the construction of the winery, with a ripening capacity of 3 million liters and state-of-the-art technology”.

And the plans don’t stop there: the family will be soon plant another 100 hectares and it is also working on protocols to obtain organic certification for about 50 hectares.

Palo Santo, the name of the new Urqo wedding wines

Under the oenology of Leonardo Pisano, the winery today presents its first two wines: Palo Santo Malbec vintage 2021, from the Tupungato area and Palo Santo Cabernet Franc, also 2021, from Los Chacayes, both with a MSRP of $1,800 in wineriesalthough one of the main focuses to grow the business will be in international markets.

“We produced about 2 million liters with grapes from our farms, which were sold in bulk. And in this harvest we have already bottled the first 100,000 liters with our brand, but we have an ambitious dream in the medium and long term: Bringing 1 million liters of bottled wine to market“Dolores completes.

“Wine that are easy to understand”

“Our idea and intention with the Urqo project is to convey great quality; to produce wines in the best possible way, with sustainable processes, with care for the environment and the people who work with us and also for the product that comes into the hands of the consumer. We want to convey that quality is important to us, but also have products that are simple, that are easy for people to understand,” adds the businesswoman.

When Dolores is asked what wine style the family likes, she does not hesitate to answer: “We have very classic flavors. We love wines that are connected to the land. We are an inland family that strives for rich wines, made with good grapes.”

In this regard, regarding the production process, the winemaker from Urqo, Leonardo Pisano, indicates that “we work with grapes from our own farms, which are located in different parts of the Uco Valley. This allows us to produce authentic and obtain pure wines from any place. We have the ability to be in the details, such as choosing the optimal harvest point for each company and sector.”

“The fact that we can choose different temperatures, technologies, maceration, fermentation or pumping times is beneficial for us to obtain components and obtain authentic wines, which offer us a wide range of aromas with all the elegance and power of the Uco Valley” , he adds. .

Urqo winery has the capacity to produce 3 million liters of wine

The Urquía family is very clear about one thing: they are proud of their heritage and, apart from the fact that they could count on experienced professionals in the sector for their landing in the wine industry, they believe that they can add a lot to the expertise they have gained in their other companies.

“We can bring an industrial and international perspective to the wine world, with a strong focus on quality and long-term development of foreign markets. These have been the pillars of success in our other businesses and many of these concepts can be applied in the wine industry,” emphasizes dolores.

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